LOWELL -- Police Lt. Thomas Siopes has reached an agreement with the city to accept a lesser punishment for his actions the night a woman died in police custody last year and end his disciplinary hearing.

Siopes, who was recommended for termination by Police Superintendent William Taylor, was slated to have his disciplinary hearing resume Tuesday.

Siopes has agreed to a 90-day suspension and a nine-month loss of rank to sergeant, sources confirmed to The Sun. The agreement also calls for 10 unpaid training days, as well as additional unpaid supervisory training for Siopes.

He is the last of five officers Taylor recommended for steep discipline to reach deals with the city to forgo disciplinary hearings and potential lengthy appeals processes.

Prior to his hearing beginning, the city had offered a demotion plus a 180-day unpaid suspension to Siopes, The Sun had reported.

Siopes was recommended for discipline for not seeking medical attention for an unconscious Alyssa Brame, and for placing her into a cell the night she died in January 2013. Siopes had said he would not have done anything differently, according to an internal investigation.

Brame, a 31-year-old Lowell resident, went 66 minutes without being checked on in a police cell or having medical attention sought. She died of alcohol poisoning.

Gary Nolan, Siopes' attorney, confirmed the settlement and said in a statement: "This was always a case that should've been settled.


Unfortunately, some cases need to go forward in a public forum, and have uncomfortable facts come to light, in order to bring the parties together. We started down that road -- and exposed several institutional problems that will hopefully be addressed by the City moving forward."

Nolan also said several high-ranking officials were prepared to testify that Siopes was one of the best supervisors they had worked with and the settlement will ensure he continues along that path.

City Manager Kevin Murphy said he was glad all five officers have now settled with the city.

"I think it is in the best interests of the city and Police Department that we resolved these issues and move forward," Murphy said.

Murphy acknowledged more work remains to be done in the department to address issues that came to light in the aftermath of Brame's death.

"I think we still have a lot of work to do as far as policies and training," Murphy said. "We are addressing those issues and are confident we will get better than we are now."

The Board of Inquiry found minimal training of two detention attendants working the night Brame died. Middlesex County District Attorney Marian Ryan's investigation into Brame's death recommended that all city Police Department personnel, both sworn and civilian, be trained "to afford a better understanding of the difference between being 'passed out' from alcohol or drugs and being 'unconscious.' "

Taylor, who had promised Brame's mother "historic discipline" for those officers criticized by the internal Board of Inquiry, defended the settlements Murphy reached.

"I've never seen in my history in the organization anything close to this level of discipline dispensed to as many superior officers in this organization," Taylor said. "I would say it is historic."

Taylor said he also spoke with Brame's mother, Alice Swiridowsky-Muckle, Thursday night about the likely deal with Siopes.

"I wanted to express to her our sympathy and our acknowledgment that we were wrong and people were held accountable," said Taylor, who had previously apologized to Swiridowsky-Muckle.

The other four officers implicated in Brame's death by the Police Department's Board of Inquiry accepted the following punishments:

* Sgt. James Fay, who faced termination, accepted a demotion to patrolman for a year, plus a 60-day suspension.

* Sgt. Michael Giuffrida was facing a one-year unpaid suspension. He accepted a 15-day suspension.

* Sgt. Francis Nobrega, also facing a one-year suspension, accepted the same deal as Giuffrida.

* Lt. Michael Kilmartin, who was facing a demotion to patrolman plus a one-year unpaid suspension, accepted a temporary, three-month demotion to sergeant, plus a 45-day unpaid suspension.

Meanwhile, an FBI probe into whether police officials committed federal civil-rights violations the night Brame died is ongoing.

The police superintendent was schedule to continue testifying in Siopes' disciplinary hearing if it had continued for a fifth day. When Siopes' disciplinary hearing was suspended on July 25, it had come to light that a copy of the Lowell Police Department's general-orders directory had the words "NEVER ISSUED" whited out next to General Order 415 when given to Siopes' attorneys.

Those two words are critical because a three-member Board of Inquiry that probed Brame's January 2013 death in the police holding cell said Siopes failed to keep himself informed of General Order 415, the "holding facility and booking procedures" allegedly issued in late 2008.

Taylor said Saturday that the policy had been issued both in 2007 and 2008 and a "clerical person" whited out the "NEVER ISSUED" because it was inaccurate. Taylor said he would be taking no disciplinary action.

"I'm completely satisfied there was no ill intent at all," Taylor said.

Follow Lyle Moran on Twitter and Tout @lylemoran.