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NASHOBA PUBLISHING/JOHN LOVE
Newly promoted Detective Greg Newman sits behind the drug stuff he has collected while working in Harvard. There are two electric scales, grinders for pot buds, a postal scale, crack pipe, cocaine kit, bongs and pipes.
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HARVARD — He’s no stranger to detective work, so it was only natural for Harvard Police Chief Edward Denmark to assign Patrolman Greg Newman to become the department’s second official detective. It’s been talked about since New Year’s but was finalized April 1.

Newman, a Vietnam Army veteran and Harvard native, joined the force in 1986 on a part-time basis and began full-time work in 1996. The title and assignment of detective will not bring a bump in pay since it’s not an increase in rank. Newman remains a patrolman. However when circumstances dictate, Newman would be looking at increased overtime pay for investigations that must be performed outside his regular daytime shift.

“Basically he’s been kind of a de facto investigator for years anyhow,” Denmark said, adding Newman will join Detective Jack Izzo and become the department’s second investigative officer. “This is a way to better ensure that we conduct better investigations and put all the information to its best use.”

Newman is another set of eyes to see if there’s any consistency between incidents from an intelligence perspective, Denmark said.

The two detectives will be employed on crimes across the boards. “I’ll be assigned to all drug cases and help Jack (Izzo) with any overload and vice versa,” said Newman.

Newman said Izzo is especially well-trained and experienced in breaking and entering and fraud investigations, whereas Newman has a specialized interest in drug cases.

“But knowing that most B&E’s are drug related, they’re intertwined,” Newman said. Denmark added Izzo is further trained in probing arson matters, computer crimes and sexual assault investigations among other specialties.

Newman joked that while Izzo will be the lead investigator, they will continue to work well together on investigations, “Because we’re all old.”

Among Newman’s pastimes are his memberships in the Harvard Sportsmen’s Club and in the United States Practical Shooting Association. Newman is partial to pistol speed-shooting competitions, for which he’s traveled to Las Vegas, Florida, Virginia, New York and Pennsylvania. He will also remain the department’s firearms instructor.

Newman also remains attached to providing education programming to schools, Scouts, and the Council on Aging audiences.

Newman’s most recent investigative training includes a two-week Drug Enforcement Agency course, as well as a two-week street-level narcotics course.

In detective work, key assistance is provided by cultivating confidential or criminal informants. Information gleaned is then capable of being developed in-house or shared at the local level via routine contacts, as well as monthly meetings with, local area police department detectives. Newman had already been attending them to track trends and compare cases.

Drug dealing is a perennial problem, Newman said. “There’ a good profit margin in it,” he said. The detective noted, of course, he’s not promoting the pursuit and he said that Harvard isn’t a hotbed of drug activity. But, unfortunately, dealers know, “It’s Harvard. There’s money here.”