Ex-lawmaker failed to make parole and remains in state custody

  • FILE - This Nov. 2, 2016, file booking photo provided by the Rochester, N.H., police department shows former New Hampshire state Rep. Kyle Tasker, who pleaded guilty in 2017 to charges of drug possession and trying to lure a 14-year-old girl into a sexual encounter, and was sentenced to three to 10 years in jail. On Thursday, March 7, 2019, a Rockingham County Superior Court judge approved Tasker's work release. It had been recommended by the state prisons but opposed by prosecutors, who said the victim in the case was against it. (Rochester Police Department via AP, File)

Monitor staff
Published: 9/22/2019 3:24:57 PM

Former state representative Kyle Tasker is not yet on the public list of sex offenders in New Hampshire even though his sentence requires him to register.

The ex-lawmaker convicted of sending encrypted sexually explicit messages to a 14-year-old is out of prison on work release, but he is not required to appear on the registry until he makes parole. He failed to qualify for parole this past May and must now wait several months before asking the New Hampshire Parole Board to rehear his case.

Tasker, 34, of Nottingham did not remain on good behavior after a judge granted his request for work release in March and he was moved to a halfway house in April, according to corrections officials. He was outside prison walls for approximately one month before officials sent him back because he violated New Hampshire Department of Corrections rules, said Laura Montenegro, public information officer for the corrections department. Tasker was incarcerated again from May 15 until Aug. 14, the same day he was granted permission to return to work release.

Even though Tasker is no longer incarcerated, he remains in the custody of the corrections department. The earliest he could request to go back before the parole board is in December, said Ashlyn St. Germain, the board’s executive assistant. To be successful, he must remain on good behavior, participate in and complete programming and have an approved residence, she said.

While corrections officials did not detail the rules violations that landed Tasker back in prison, state prosecutors allege that during the same time period he gained access to the internet in violation of prison rules that prohibit him from going online. Capt. Andrew Newcomb of the corrections department notified the Rockingham County Attorney’s Office that Tasker had also asked his mother to manage his Facebook account and sent a friend request to a child of a staff member who knew his victim.

Consequently, prosecutors say they want Tasker back in prison and are asking a judge to impose a suspended six-month jail sentence.

Tasker, who completed a sex offender treatment program to shave off six months of his minimum three-year sentence, said he did nothing wrong and has asked a judge to schedule a hearing.

Tasker was sentenced in 2017 to three to 10 years in state prison for drug possession and attempting to solicit sex over the internet from a 14-year-old girl. He pleaded guilty and was convicted of five counts of possession of a controlled drug with intent to distribute and four counts of prohibited use of a computer.

As a condition of his sentence, Tasker is prohibited from having contact with the victim and her immediate family. He was also ordered to have no unsupervised contact with anyone under 16 by phone, computer or email.

Police arrested Tasker in early 2016 stemming from a search of his home that yielded “vast amounts” of drugs, including marijuana, hallucinogenic mushrooms and ecstasy.

In the wake of his arrest, Tasker resigned from the Legislature while he was serving his third term.

A Department of Justice report published in 2016 stated Tasker used marijuana at the State House and sold the drug to other state legislators as part of his drug distribution business.

However, the Attorney General’s Office found no evidence of “pervasive illicit drug transactions at the State House or among elected officials” and did not charge any other legislators with drug crimes.

(Alyssa Dandrea can be reached at 369-3319 or at adandrea@cmonitor.com.)



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