Nicole Chase was a young mom with a daughter to support when she took a job at a local restaurant in Canton, Connecticut. She liked the work and was good at her job. But the place turned out to be more like a frat house than a quaint roadside sandwich spot. And the crude behavior kept escalating – until one day she says her boss went too far and she turned to the local police for help. What happened next would put a detective on the hot seat and lead to a legal battle that would drag on for years. The United States Supreme Court would even get involved.

Reveal reporter Rachel de Leon spent years taking a close look at cases across the country in which people reported sexual assaults to police, only to find themselves investigated. In this hour, we explore one case and hear how police interrogated an alleged perpetrator, an alleged victim and each other. 

De Leon’s investigation is also the subject of the documentary “Victim/Suspect,” now available on Netflix.


Reporter and producer: Rachel de Leon | Lead producer: Katharine Mieszkowski | Producer: Kathryn Styer Martinez | Editor: Cynthia Rodriguez | Additional editing: Kate Howard | Fact checkers: Nikki Frick and Kim Freda | Data consultant: Sarah Cohen | Research assistance: Betty Marquez, Skyler Glover, Vanessa Ochavillo and Elena Neale-Sacks | Production manager: Steven Rascón | Sound design: Jim Briggs and Fernando Arruda | Post-production team: Kathryn Styer Martinez | Digital producer: Sarah Mirk | Episode art: Molly Mendoza | Interim executive producers: Brett Myers and Taki Telonidis | Host: Al Letson

Support for Reveal is provided by the Reva and David Logan Foundation, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the Jonathan Logan Family Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the Hellman Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the Park Foundation.


Reveal transcripts are produced by a third-party transcription service and may contain errors. Please be aware that the official record for Reveal’s radio stories is the audio.

Speaker 1:From the Center for Investigative Reporting in PRX, this is Reveal. I’m Al Letson. It’s 2017. Allie Archer is in her early twenties and she’s working at Nodine’s restaurant.
Allie:Everybody seemed very relaxed and everybody was pretty easy to get along with. It seemed like fun at first.
Speaker 1:Nodine’s is in a town called Canton, Connecticut, just outside of Hartford.
Allie:It’s definitely a well-known name around the towns. It seems like everybody knows Nodine’s meat.
Speaker 1:Since the late sixties, the Nodine family has been curing and smoking meats in the foothills of the Berkshires. Ronald Nodine started the business. The restaurant is a new venture which opened in 2016, a couple years before Ronald passed away. His son Calvin runs this small spot off the side of the road with wood panel walls and plaid curtains. While the decor may be Kitchy Country Inn, the vibe is more Frat house. Allie says Calvin stashes beer in the back freezer and drinks on the job. She remembers one day in particular.
Allie:He was walking around barefoot without his shoes on, and he was drinking alcohol in front of all the customers, and it showed up on one of our Yelp reviews.
Speaker 1:We found that review, it says, “Very inconsistent. Owner can be seen randomly wandering in his socks with a beer in hand.” Several employees at Nodines are related to Calvin. His wife helps him run the place, his stepson is the head chef. Allie is even a distant relative. She says Calvin tells dirty jokes about women, about blondes, and soon Nodine’s goes from being fun and relaxed to toxic and chaotic.
Allie:I didn’t feel safe being around Calvin.
Speaker 1:And then one day Allie says Calvin’s been drinking all day, and crosses the line from being crude and offensive to getting physical with her friend and coworker, Nicole Chase.
Allie:This time he actually came up behind her and put his arm around her.
Speaker 1:Nicole, like Allie, is in her twenties. But she’s not a part of the Nodine family.
Allie:And he had this joke and it was like a three part joke, and every part of the joke he would move his hand down. And by the end of the joke, he had his hand on her butt. And I just remember seeing that and standing right next to her. And for me, I wish I had actually said something to him. I wish I slapped him honestly.
Speaker 1:But it doesn’t stop there. What happens later that night at Nodine’s, and how police responded will spark years of lawsuits, a police investigation, and the actions of two officers will be scrutinized, and the dispute will wind its way all the way to the United States Supreme Court. The court battle that ensues lasts longer than the restaurant itself would stay in business. But before we continue, we want to let you know that this episode will describe a sexual assault and may be difficult for some listeners to hear.

Reveals Rachel de Leon went to Connecticut to meet Allie’s coworker Nicole, and to investigate the aftermath of that night at Nodine’s.
Rachel de Leon:The first thing you need to know about Nicole is that the job at Nodine’s restaurant really mattered to her. When she was working there, she was a young mom with a six-year-old daughter to support.
Nicole Chase:I had no savings. I didn’t even have a bank account, I didn’t have credit cards, I had nothing. My fiance took care of us as much as he could, and besides that, I had not a [inaudible].
Rachel de Leon:Nicole doesn’t drive, and Nodine’s is close to home and easy to get to. She does a little bit of everything there. Waitressing, cooking, cleaning, ringing up orders. Along the way, she gets used to putting up with Calvin’s alleged inappropriate jokes.
Nicole Chase:Within the first day I was there, he like, “Oh, you want to hear a joke? Blah, blah, blah.” And I was like, “Ha, ha, ha.” You’re kind of laughing, but it’s a fake laugh. Like, “Okay, goodbye. Let me go on with my stuff.”
Rachel de Leon:But his behavior keeps getting worse. Some of the forms of sexual harassment Nicole and Allie describe are so overt and over the top, they sound like scenes from a bad 1970 sitcom. Like Calvin dropping his eyeglasses and then telling his female employees to pick them up so they’ll have to bend over in front of him.
Nicole Chase:After a few times, I had caught onto what he was doing and I would stop picking them up, but then he’d be like, “Pick up my glasses.”
Rachel de Leon:Calvin is 30 years older than Nicole. When he allegedly puts his hand on her butt in front of Allie, Nicole’s confused and not really sure what to do.
Nicole Chase:In my head, I kind of brush it off. I was like, “Oh, he’s drunk, he’s feeling good,” but I didn’t really go further than that I don’t think.
Rachel de Leon:A lot was going on that day. Nicole says Calvin had just promoted her to manager and she needed her job, so again, she lets the incident go. But as the night wears on, Nicole says Calvin starts pushing his wife to leave to go home and feed the dogs.
Nicole Chase:This didn’t raise huge red flags in my head, but it was like, “Wow, he’s really trying to push her out of here.” Compared to usually they’d leave together.
Rachel de Leon:Everyone eventually leaves, except a dishwasher who yells out for Calvin. That’s when Nicole says Calvin grabs her arm.
Nicole Chase:I remember Calvin pulling me into the bathroom.
Rachel de Leon:Then she says he locks the door and puts his finger to his lips for her to be quiet. The dishwasher calls for Calvin again and for Nicole as he’s leaving, Calvin shouts “Goodnight” back. Then according to Nicole, he exposes himself to her and tells her to perform oral sex. Her account of what happened at Nodine’s is all in police and court records.
Nicole Chase:I just remember him pushing my head down, and I remember he was wearing blue boxers because anytime I pull out blue boxers of my fiances, I remember.
Rachel de Leon:Nicole says she freezes, fighting back or even resisting doesn’t cross her mind.
Nicole Chase:It was just like I had left me. Even though I could be a tough person, there was no like, “I’m going to beat this man up.” It wasn’t something that went through my head. It was just like, “This is actually happening.”
Rachel de Leon:Nicole says she does what he tells her to do, and all she can think is, “Please let it be over.”
Nicole Chase:Just get me home. Get me home.
Rachel de Leon:Nicole didn’t physically resist or try to run away. This is not uncommon. Survivors have told me it felt safer to avoid a fight. They have no idea if the attacker will resort to more physical violence if they resist, and they want to survive with as few injuries as possible.

I asked Calvin to tell us his version of what happened. I reached him by phone, but he said he wouldn’t talk to me. In court records, Calvin has denied sexually assaulting or harassing Nicole. The morning after all this happened, Nicole goes to the Canton Police Department with her mom. Officer Adam Gomper comes out to meet them.
Officer Gomper:Hey, [inaudible].
Nicole Chase:Hi.
Officer Gomper:So what’s going on?
Nicole Chase:A lot of stuff.
Rachel de Leon:I got this video through a public records request. Instead of taking Nicole to a private room, Officer Gomper talks to her in the lobby of the police station, which is visible from the street. Nicole notices the large windows, and they make her feel on display. She tells Officer Gomper some background about the restaurant, and then shares that Calvin exposed himself to her.
Nicole Chase:I’m like, “Oh my God. Oh my God.” And I froze. It all happened so quickly and I looked down and he was like, “I know you must not get it at home, so suck it or something.”
Rachel de Leon:But she leaves it at that. She doesn’t mention the alleged earlier butt grabbing or that she felt coerced to perform oral sex. And at this point, Nicole hasn’t told a soul the full story, including her mom who’s sitting right next to her.
Officer Gomper:Well if you want make a complaint, it’s going to be investigated, which means I would take a written statement from you.
Rachel de Leon:Nicole’s not sure she’s ready for that. Also, she’s acutely aware that it would be her word against Calvin’s, and she thinks his status gives him the upper hand.
Nicole Chase:I know he’s [inaudible]. I can’t do about it and I have no proof.
Rachel de Leon:Also, she’s really worried about losing her job. She says she’s supposed to go into work later that day.
Nicole Chase:I don’t want him. But I want to pretend to go to work and pretend that he doesn’t know, or I’m hoping he doesn’t remember so I can go to work and at least feel halfway normal.
Rachel de Leon:Nicole was hoping that Calvin had been so drunk the night before, he wouldn’t remember what had happened and she could go back to work and somehow forget about it too.

This might sound a little strange. A victim tells only part of the story, and then hopes her alleged perpetrator will forget the whole thing. But this fits with all the research about sexual assault victims. They often want to minimize and avoid what happened because it’s like reliving a trauma, and the closer the relationship is with an assailant, the more likely they are to hold back details. It often takes time to get the full story.

It’s clear that Nicole isn’t ready to launch a full police investigation yet. She and Officer Gomper talk some more. He gives Nicole a card from the Office of Victim Services where she can seek support if she needs it, and he tells her she can come back if she decides she wants to make an official complaint.
Nicole Chase:Thank you very much.
Officer Gomper:No problem. I hope it works out. But sounds like he’s never going to change.
Rachel de Leon:As soon as Nicole gets back to work, she realizes returning was a big mistake. In police records, she says Calvin tries to lure her into a small closet with him and propositions her for sex. By the end of her shift, she decides she’s never coming back and takes home the photo of her daughter she keeps at work. A few days later, Nicole goes back to the Canton Police Department with Allie, her friend from work, and makes her official complaint with Officer Gomper. She talks about Calvin grabbing her butt, exposing himself to her and telling her to perform oral sex, but she still doesn’t tell the full story. Officer Gomper notifies Calvin Nodine there’s a complaint against him. When he arrives at the Canton Police Department, he’s with his lawyer David Morgan. Calvin is questioned by Detective John Colangelo, who’s an experienced investigator. He’s been on the force in Canton for 20 years. The interview starts off with the attorney and the detective talking about people they know in common.
Detective Colan…:Oh really?
Rachel de Leon:It turns out the attorney used to play golf with Detective Colangelo’s dad.
Detective Colan…:He was my golf partner for a long time. He taught me how to putt.
Calvin:No, he didn’t. He can’t putt himself.
Detective Colan…:He was the best putter in the [inaudible].
Calvin:No, he wasn’t.
Rachel de Leon:This may sound like a pretty chummy way to start an interrogation, but a friendly approach is a technique used to build rapport. Before a detective starts asking tough questions.
Calvin:My language, if I swear [inaudible]
Rachel de Leon:When the conversation turns to Nicole’s allegations, Colangelo strikes a casual tone.
Detective Colan…:What’s this girl’s name again?
Detective Colan…:Nicole. What’s Nicole’s deal?
Calvin:I don’t know.
Rachel de Leon:Detective Colangelo asks Calvin about the sex talk at work.
Detective Colan…:Nicole said that there was inappropriate talking and speech and sexual stuff.
Calvin:I’m a meat guy. I grew up in meat plants since I was nine years old.
Detective Colan…:Mm-hmm.
Calvin:So does what I say get a little harsh sometimes? Yeah.
Rachel de Leon:Then the detective brings up Nicole’s and Allie’s allegation about him grabbing Nicole’s butt. That could be considered a sexual assault in the fourth degree.
Detective Colan…:Apparently, according to her and someone else, your hand made it down to her rear end.
Calvin:No, I wouldn’t have done that.
Detective Colan…:Just saying.
Calvin:Yeah, no, no.
Detective Colan…:Just saying, why are they saying it? That’s what I have to-
Calvin:Yeah, that’s the problem. I don’t know.
Rachel de Leon:Eventually Colangelo brings up Nicole’s more serious allegation.
Detective Colan…:She didn’t look down and you exposed yourself to her.
Calvin:That’s bullshit.
Rachel de Leon:Calvin says that he didn’t even know where Nicole was then.
Calvin:She could have been out front and having a cigarette, I don’t know where she was.
Detective Colan…:Okay, why would she say this?
Calvin:I don’t know. Maybe she thinks the business is going down, she’s looking for money.
Detective Colan…:Possible.
Detective Colan…:That’s one of the angles I’m looking at.
Rachel de Leon:And then Colangelo tries to minimize what happened. Police often do this to get somebody to tell them more.
Detective Colan…:If you were fooling around with Nikki consensually, that’s a whole different story and that might open [inaudible].
Rachel de Leon:When it comes to sex crimes, arguing that an act was consensual is a common defense for suspects.
David Morgan:Can I have a minute with him?
Detective Colan…:Sure.
Rachel de Leon:Calvin’s lawyer asks to meet with his client privately and the two men leave the room for a few minutes. When they come back, Calvin has a new story.
Calvin:She grabbed me-
Detective Colan…:Mm-hmm.
Calvin:And said, “Look it. I’ve got something for you to see.”
Detective Colan…:Mm-hmm.
Calvin:I figured there was a problem in the men’s room. She was the one that dropped my pants-
Detective Colan…:Mm-hmm.
Calvin:And gave me a blow out.
Detective Colan…:Okay.
Calvin:And it was pretty much so fast, it’s like, “Okay, that fucking happened.”
Rachel de Leon:His story throws everything he’s been saying into question. Calvin’s now claiming Nicole pulled him into the bathroom and initiated everything, and Detective Colangelo has now succeeded and getting Calvin to admit that he’s been lying.
Detective Colan…:When you come in here and I ask you something, you’re telling me she left already, but then the story changes.
Calvin:Look, I’m trying to protect myself.
Detective Colan…:I understand.
Calvin:It’s embarrassing. It was a moment after a 12-hour day and a bad decision.
Detective Colan…:Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm.
Calvin:I should have stopped her.
Rachel de Leon:Nicole called it. It’s his statement against hers, and it’s the time when the detectives should be pressing for more details like, “How long were you in the bathroom? Were you intoxicated? Draw me a map of where you were standing.” But that’s not what happens. Instead, Colangelo offers Calvin a way to turn the tables on this whole situation.
Detective Colan…:So you think she’s a liar?
Calvin:As far as it not being consensual?
Detective Colan…:Yes.
Rachel de Leon:Then Detective Colangelo tries to convince Calvin to take a polygraph.
Detective Colan…:If you pass a polygraph, she can be brought in and it gives us leverage to see if the story changes.
Rachel de Leon:He tells Calvin he’s used this strategy before in a past case. Later, he’ll claim he was bluffing.
Detective Colan…:Now she’s a suspect in a false statement, in a false police report. Now she can be asked if she can take, we’ll take a polygraph. Completely different animal. So you switch the case, that’s all.
Rachel de Leon:Switch the case just like that. The victim can become the suspect. Weeks go by. Nicole wonders what is going on with the case. Then she’s called back into the Canton Police Department. This time it’s just Nicole and Detective Colangelo.
Detective Colan…:Have a seat.
Rachel de Leon:And they’re in a private room with the door shut.
Detective Colan…:This case is now on my desk.
Rachel de Leon:Nicole has no idea in this conversation that she may now be considered a suspect. She tells the detective she’s concerned about how slowly the case is moving.
Detective Colan…:I’ve done a lot of work on this, as has Officer [inaudible].
Nicole Chase:Well, I’m glad. Because yeah, for a while I was like, “I just don’t think they’re taking this seriously.”
Detective Colan…:No, we’re taking it very seriously.
Nicole Chase:And I was like, I don’t know what more I can do.
Detective Colan…:Well, these things take time though, so…
Rachel de Leon:Actually, we looked at the police case file and after they interviewed Calvin, the police didn’t do much. They documented a phone call from him saying he failed a private polygraph because he hadn’t taken his medication, and they received a fax from Calvin’s lawyer saying that he won’t be taking a police administered polygraph.
Nicole Chase:I know it takes time, but this man has caused me to lose so much money that I had to move out of my place. I went to a doctor, had to get put on more medicine for my PTSD-
Detective Colan…:Mm-hmm.
Nicole Chase:And my anxiety attacks and all that.
Detective Colan…:Right.
Nicole Chase:So my whole life has been flipped upside down.
Rachel de Leon:Detective Colangelo assures Nicole that he’s working hard on the case. Then he starts to ask her about her relationship with Calvin.
Detective Colan…:Was there any relations between you and Calvin that were consensual prior to that Saturday?
Nicole Chase:Nothing.
Rachel de Leon:Colangelo keeps pressing Nicole.
Detective Colan…:I have to be able to understand where these relationships are because he’s going to tell me something different and he did.
Nicole Chase:Mm-hmm.
Rachel de Leon:And it’s here, almost an hour in, that this interview takes a drastic turn because Colangelo starts to deploy an interrogation technique meant for suspects, not alleged victims.
Detective Colan…:I offered him a polygraph. Do you think he’ll take it?
Nicole Chase:I think he would try it.
Detective Colan…:Okay, you think he’ll pass it?
Nicole Chase:No.
Detective Colan…:What if I told you he took one?
Nicole Chase:Did he pass it?
Detective Colan…:You tell me.
Nicole Chase:I don’t think so.
Detective Colan…:You don’t think he will or did?
Nicole Chase:No.
Detective Colan…:What if I told you he took two?
Nicole Chase:Really?
Rachel de Leon:Actually, Calvin took one polygraph and he failed it.
Detective Colan…:He’s taking two polygraphs.
Nicole Chase:Okay.
Detective Colan…:And I know that there are issues in some of these stories.
Rachel de Leon:Colangelo is using what police call a ruse, a bluff or a ploy. It’s legal and it’s used to corner a suspect into a confession.
Detective Colan…:So I need you to think hard. Is there anything that you think will come up or has come up in this investigation that I should know about?
Rachel de Leon:Nicole breaks down crying and she discloses what she hasn’t told anyone before. Not her friends, her fiance, or her mom. She’s finally confronting what she says happened to her that night.
Detective Colan…:There’s tissues right there.
Nicole Chase:You ready, baby? It was just him. He pulled me in there and he dropped them, and as soon as he told me to do it, I just did it because I just didn’t know what to do.
Detective Colan…:So you did give him oral sex?
Nicole Chase:Yeah.
Detective Colan…:Okay.
Rachel de Leon:Colangelo hears this as a consensual encounter, but Nicole is clear she didn’t want to engage in oral sex. She says she wanted to tell the whole story but she was afraid of what other people would think.
Nicole Chase:I just don’t want my boyfriend to know, and I don’t want people to ask me why I did it when I didn’t want to do it, but I was just so scared.
Rachel de Leon:Detective Colangelo asks Nicole if she wants to change her previous statement. She says she does.
Nicole Chase:I know it looks bad if you change your story, but I just was so scared I didn’t know what to do.
Detective Colan…:Well this is why these are very important because it’s an oath basically, and you’re saying that I understand that by signing this I’m telling the truth and if you’re not, then you’re actually committing a crime also.
Rachel de Leon:Nicole didn’t tell her full story and to Colangelo, that’s a lie. He doesn’t dig deeper. He doesn’t ask for more details about her state of mind during the alleged assault, which would help explain why she complied. This black and white thinking, either she’s lying and she wasn’t assaulted or she’s telling the whole truth and is a real victim can shortcut an investigation, and it’s a common theme I’ve found in my research. I began looking into cases just like Nicole several years ago, where an alleged victim of sexual assault becomes the suspect and is charged with crimes like false reporting. I looked closely at 52 cases, and I saw patterns emerge, like 15 cases were decided in a day. Once police find inaccuracies or contradictions, they turn their investigation around, and other times they never even interview the alleged suspect. Police records sometimes show very little evidence to back up the false reporting charges. After Nicole tells her whole experience to Colangelo, she has to decide whether she wants to officially change her statement or not.
Detective Colan…:Do you want to consult with your attorney?
Nicole Chase:Can I do that?
Detective Colan…:Sure.
Nicole Chase:I just want to make sure that I might even still have a chance at least of getting some type of justice.
Rachel de Leon:Three weeks after her interview with Colangelo, Nicole goes back to the station. She’s there to officially revise her statement and turn in printouts of texts which Colangelo asked her for. A dispatcher tells her Colangelo’s busy and he’ll reach out if he needs her. She never hears back from him and emails the detective twice to follow up. By this time, Colangelo has already submitted a warrant for her arrest and when he finally emails her back, he doesn’t tell her that. It’s been two and a half months since Nicole has told Detective Colangelo the full story. She gets a call from him, and she can’t believe what she’s hearing.
Nicole Chase:You have a warrant out for arrest, you need to come into the station. And I just held that phone and in my head, I have no idea what a warrant for my arrest is for because I haven’t done anything wrong.
Rachel de Leon:The charge, making a false statement to a police officer. She turns herself in later that day.
Speaker 1:Nicole started out as a victim reporting an alleged crime to the police. Then a detective lied to her and now she’s being charged for lying to him. When we come back, Nicole fights back. That’s next on Reveal.

From the Center for Investigative Reporting in PRX, this is Reveal. I’m Al Letson. We’ve been talking about the police investigation into a report of sexual assault, but this isn’t your typical case. What makes it stand out is who the police arrested, not the alleged perpetrator. They arrested the alleged victim. And we should note again, this episode may not be appropriate for all listeners. We can’t know from our investigation whether a sexual assault actually occurred, but we can review how the police decided to charge Nicole Chase with a crime, and how she and her attorney fight back. Reveal reporter Rachel de Leon takes it from here.
Rachel de Leon:Today, Nicole lives in a small town not far from where she used to work. It’s a cute neighborhood. The houses are spaced out. She’s got half an acre around her. When we pull up, Lew Chimes, her attorney, is standing in the driveway.
Lew Chimes:Welcome to the northeast.
Nicole Chase:Hi.
Lew Chimes:We’ve got some snow.
Rachel de Leon:The ground is covered in five inches of snow and Nicole’s house is cozy. She keeps apologizing for the mess, only the place is tidy. It is a full house though. She lives here with her fiance, two kids, and a brand new edition.
Nicole Chase:Blue.
Lew Chimes:What?
Nicole Chase:Blue. Go get it. Hi sweetie.
Lew Chimes:What’s his name? What’s it?
Nicole Chase:Blue. I just got a puppy, his name is Blue.

Yes, right now is the potty training and the nipping and the chewing of everything.
Rachel de Leon:Nicole surprised her fiance with Blue a few weeks back. It was his dream to have bloodhound someday. This house goes back generations. It’s where she and her mom both grew up, and now she owns it. Her kids walk the same roads she used to go to school.
Nicole Chase:I feel like I’m doing good, but I’m hoping that I just keep working on myself more and more, and I hope that I somehow just become just better than I already have.
Rachel de Leon:Before Nicole even worked at Nodine’s restaurant, she’d been through some really tough experiences, including teenage drug addiction and domestic violence. Then came that night at Nodine’s in 2017, which led to her arrest. She sought out the help of different lawyers and one of them posted about her case online. Lew sees the lawyer’s message and wants to know more.
Lew Chimes:I looked at the arrest warrant for Nicole, and I hadn’t met Nicole yet. And then I read it and reread it two or three times, and then I called the lawyer back and I says, “Am I missing something?”
Rachel de Leon:Nicole’s criminal defense attorney is also astounded by the charge, and tells prosecutors it’s outrageous. The prosecutor agrees to drop the case, as long as Nicole doesn’t get into any other legal trouble before the next court date. The arrest is erased from her record, but Lew doesn’t think that should be the end of it. He also believes Nicole could have a strong civil case against the Canton Police Department, so he sets up a meeting with her.
Lew Chimes:I was just astonished at what I was hearing.
Rachel de Leon:Lew specializes in employment and personal injury law, but he knows police culture. He’s sued police, he’s represented police, and was once a prosecutor for the Manhattan DA.
Lew Chimes:I spent 15 minutes deciding whether I wanted to represent Nicole, and the hour and 45 minutes of the rest of the two-hour meeting kind of seeing myself cross-examining the police officers in the case.
Rachel de Leon:Nicole says it was news to her that she could go after the officers and the town for turning her into a suspect.
Nicole Chase:Well once they said it was something I could do, it was like yeah, absolutely. They just arrested me for nothing.
Rachel de Leon:So Lew lets the town know he intends to file a civil suit, and the town council decides to launch an internal affairs investigation at the police department. It’s an important moment because the police officers will have to explain their actions.
Christopher Ars…:Okay, today is May 31st, it’s approximately 8:08 in the morning. We’re here for the interview of Detective John Colangelo.
Rachel de Leon:You’re hearing the voice of Canton’s Chief of Police, Christopher Arsiero. It took a long time to get these recordings. We had to fight for them for well over a year.
Christopher Ars…:Have an opportunity to be…
Rachel de Leon:The men are sitting in a drab conference room inside the police station.
Christopher Ars…:I’m going to just show you some of your training records.
Rachel de Leon:The chief pulls out printed PowerPoint slides.
Christopher Ars…:And I’ll just read a couple that talks about the victims might share information that is not consistent, not true, or not complete, but that doesn’t mean it’s a false report. Does that ring a bell to your recollection or your general?
Detective Colan…:It doesn’t mean it’s a true report either, does it?
Rachel de Leon:It’s hard to hear, but Colangelo’s defensive and says, “Doesn’t mean it’s a true report either, does it?
Detective Colan…:…With the truth.
Rachel de Leon:The chief keeps going.
Christopher Ars…:And it’s also true sometimes victims of sexual assault manifest certain behaviors, they’re in shock, they’re somewhat traumatized.
Detective Colan…:I’m not a psychiatrist.
Christopher Ars…:What’s that?
Detective Colan…:I’m not a psychiatrist.
Christopher Ars…:Okay.
Detective Colan…:You’re asking me psychological questions.
Rachel de Leon:Soon the questioning turns to Colangelo’s interview with Calvin Nodine, who Nicole has accused of a sex crime. He’s a suspect in a police investigation, and the chief wants to know why Colangelo is giving him so much leeway.
Christopher Ars…:At the beginning of the interview, you told him he was free to leave. Why’d you tell him he was free to leave?
Detective Colan…:Because it was a criminal interview, and he was a suspect at the time.
Christopher Ars…:So you give that warning to someone who’s a suspect. They’re free to leave if you have him in front of you?
Detective Colan…:Yes. Yes. I try to always do that.
Rachel de Leon:Then the chief asks Colangelo if he gave Nicole that same warning.
Detective Colan…:She wasn’t a suspect.
Christopher Ars…:She was never a suspect at any point in time during your interview?
Detective Colan…:I needed to bring her in to go over the things that he said to see what matched and didn’t match.
Christopher Ars…:Okay. Any point in time during your interview, if she became a suspect, did you tell her she was free to leave?
Detective Colan…:I don’t recall.
Christopher Ars…:Okay.
Rachel de Leon:Colangelo giving Calvin seemingly preferential treatment is brought up several times in this three hour long interview. Another example is when Colangelo tells Calvin that he usually gives a suspect a base on balls for the first false statement. I’m not a baseball person, so I asked around. What he means is giving a pass for the first lie.
Christopher Ars…:So did you ever tell her that I typically would give a base on balls for the first false statement?
Detective Colan…:No, because the problem with that is twofold.
Rachel de Leon:First, Colangelo argues that he didn’t know Nicole’s statement was false.
Detective Colan…:I didn’t know that she gave a false statement until she broke down crying and said, “I got to tell you I gave some him oral sex.”
Rachel de Leon:And then he argues something different that no two people are alike.
Detective Colan…:They’re like fingerprints or snowflakes. No person gets interviewed the same. I mean, should I, from now on every interview I do in there, say, “If you give a false statement, get a base on balls.” No, it’s statements that I make are done to elicit the truth.
Rachel de Leon:Colangelo relies on this a lot. The idea that he’s only being chummy with Calvin because he’s trying to get him to confess to what really happened.
Christopher Ars…:Within the first five or 10 minutes of the interview, you say to Calvin Nodine that you’re not sure you believe everything that she’s telling me?
Detective Colan…:Mm-hmm.
Christopher Ars…:Why would you give him that statement? Doesn’t that leave him-
Detective Colan…:You’re picking out statements. I mean you-
Christopher Ars…:You can explain it.
Detective Colan…:I’m don’t want to explain it.
Rachel de Leon:Again, Colangelo leans on the idea that he’s bluffing to draw out the truth.
Detective Colan…:The fact is that, and I’m going to tell you and I hate to do it on tape, but here’s my message. Who are you going to tell your darkest secrets? Someone you like or someone you hate. You’re going to tell it to someone you like. So you do your best to find a bond with them.
Rachel de Leon:It’s kind of an old law enforcement trope. The good cop that makes you feel safe. Colangelo’s right, police experts say it’s one way to get people to talk. But then once they do start talking, you want them to keep talking. One experienced investigator told me you should listen closely for inconsistencies and for things that sound absurd or implausible. And during that pivotal moment when Calvin changes his story and says there was consensual oral sex, Colangelo does little to follow up.
Christopher Ars…:What details did he give you about how the oral sex occurred?
Detective Colan…:He said they were in the bathroom and she gave him oral sex.
Christopher Ars…:But do you know how he got into the bathroom?
Detective Colan…:The two of them were closing or something, I don’t recall exactly.
Christopher Ars…:Do you know how his pants came down?
Detective Colan…:I don’t recall exactly.
Christopher Ars…:Do you recall where he was positioned in the bathroom?
Detective Colan…:No, I don’t recall.
Christopher Ars…:You don’t recall or you didn’t ask those questions?
Detective Colan…:I don’t know. I don’t recall, so I don’t recall if I asked him or not.
Christopher Ars…:Okay.
Rachel de Leon:Colangelo didn’t ask those questions during his hour long interview with Calvin. And when Calvin later calls to say that he failed a private polygraph, there’s also no follow up.
Christopher Ars…:Did you ever ask to get the results of that first polygraph?
Detective Colan…:No, I didn’t.
Christopher Ars…:Why not?
Detective Colan…:Because they’re not admissible in court, because I know he’s going to say no, and you’re not going to get it on a search warrant because it’s not evidence of a crime seeing that it’s not admissible in court.
Christopher Ars…:Well again, is it necessarily have to be admissible in court for use of for impeachment purposes or evidentiary purposes or other leads to follow up on?
Detective Colan…:Polygraphs generally have…
Rachel de Leon:I wanted to talk to Colangelo myself. I called. texted, emailed. Finally, his attorney responded. She’d advised that he not talked to me, but said he acted appropriately at all times. I also tried to reach Officer Gomper, the first officer Nicole spoke with, but he never responded. In the internal affairs interview, Colangelo gets increasingly defiant with the chief.
Detective Colan…:You see, this investigation you’re doing, you’re trying to fit me into a theory that you have. I don’t, I sit back and I let people tell me what happened, and that’s the truth. Is Calvin Nodine a crass individual? He is. There’s no question about it. He’s not very likable in my opinion, but I’m sure some people do like them. Certainly if there was a probable cause for an arrest for Calvin I developed, then he would’ve been arrested. Calvin Nodine is not my friend, and I’m not doing him any favors. I’m following what the truth is.
Rachel de Leon:The irony is that Colangelo’s quest for the truth is a win for Calvin, but it’s Nicole who thanks Colangelo during her interview with him at the police station.
Nicole Chase:Thank you for being here for me, but also thank you for making me be able to come out and say it to somebody what really happened.
Rachel de Leon:This was a breakthrough moment for Nicole. She felt like she had finally admitted the full extent of her sexual assault. Months would pass after that interview, and there would be no further action by the police except to write up her arrest warrant.
Nicole Chase:If I had only knew what he had been doing, I would’ve never thanked him for that. I would’ve never told him.
Rachel de Leon:In a court deposition, Nicole shared that she will never report a crime to the Canton Police Department again. And many others share her distrust of police. According to research, 70% of sexual assault crimes go unreported, and the fear of not being believed is one of the many reasons why.
Speaker 1:In the end, the internal affairs investigation found that Detective Colangelo should have told prosecutors Nicole tried to revise her statement. It also dinged him for letting Nicole believe she was a victim, when a warrant was already out for her arrest. Colangelo was suspended for three days without pay. Then he turned around and sued the town, claiming he’d been scapegoated in a quote “Sham Internal Affairs Investigation to appease the Me Too movement for political gain.” The judge dismissed the case. Still, the Internal affairs investigation did uphold Colangelo’s decision to arrest Nicole, and it claims that the Connecticut State Police reviewed the case too and found Colangelo was also justified in not arresting Calvin.
Sergeant Allen …:That’s absolutely false.
Speaker 14:Wow. Okay.
Speaker 1:We find out what one state investigator really thought about the case next on Reveal.

From the Center for Investigative Reporting in PRX. This is Reveal. I’m Al Letson. We’ve been talking about Nicole Chase, who reported an alleged sex crime to the Canton Police Department, then she was arrested. The charges against Nicole were eventually dropped and the police department conducted an internal investigation and found Nicole’s arrest was justified, but officers did make some mistakes so the department made changes, like a supervisor must now be alerted before a victim becomes a suspect. But what about Nicole’s accusations against Calvin Nodine? Should he have been arrested? That question got kicked to the state police to answer, so Reveals Rachel de Leon followed up with him
Rachel de Leon:Inside a report from Canton Police Chief Christopher Arsiero’s Internal Affairs investigation is a line. It says, “Connecticut State Police reviewed Nicole’s case and found no probable cause to arrest Calvin.” I wanted to read this review to understand their logic, so I asked the state police for it, and their legal department said they never conducted an investigation into the matter, and didn’t make any official determinations. But I knew a state police sergeant was at least assigned to look at the case. I saw his name Sergeant Allen Bisan in an email, so I called him.
Sergeant Allen …:I never said there was no finding of probable cause to pursue charges. I never said that. That’s absolutely false.
Rachel de Leon:Wow. Okay.

Allen Bisan worked for the state police for about 25 years. He retired in good standing in 2022, and he remembers being given Nicole’s case to review. It stuck with him all these years.
Sergeant Allen …:I felt that she had a case against that guy, and why he didn’t get arrested is beyond me. I think this girl got victimized twice.
Rachel de Leon:This was Allen’s own personal view and he didn’t speak up at the time. Today, he regrets not bringing his concerns to the attention of state prosecutors. Instead, he says he recommended his department not get involved any further.
Sergeant Allen …:It just didn’t smell right for me, and that’s not the way I would’ve handled it.
Rachel de Leon:But Chief Arsiero maintains that the state police found there was no probable cause to arrest Calvin. That’s based on a voicemail from Allen boss who tells the Chief he’s supportive of the Canton Officer’s investigation, and some emails. In one email from April 2018, Chief Arsiero summarizes a phone call between himself and Allen. It says, and I’m paraphrasing, “Your office found no probable cause to arrest Calvin, and had no issues with my detective’s investigation or interviews.” Then the chief writes, “If I missed or misconstrued anything let me know.” But Allen never writes back. He says he doesn’t remember getting this email. Nearly two months later, Arsiero reaches out again to ask whether there will be a written summary of state police findings. This time Allen responds and says, “There shall be no written summary for findings on this case.” He’d been talking to his legal department about his concerns.
Sergeant Allen …:I told him that there was definitely some malfeasance on this investigation, and that if we pursue this or write anything with this, we’ll be involved in a lawsuit because the procedure that they utilized was definitely wrong. I didn’t see it as a correct way to do an investigation.
Rachel de Leon:Allen was afraid Nicole was going to sue, and he was right. Nicole starts with her boss, Calvin Nodine. Her lawsuit again against Calvin and Nodine’s Smokehouse alleges that Calvin sexually assaulted Nicole, and caused her emotional distress. Calvin denies any wrongdoing. He and the business eventually settled the lawsuit for an undisclosed amount. Next, Nicole sues the town of Canton, and the police. Officer Gomper and Detective Colangelo are named in the suit.
Lew Chimes:I think the police misconduct here was egregious.
Rachel de Leon:That’s Lew Chimes, Nicole’s lawyer. The lawsuit alleges there was no basis for her arrest and that the officers acted with malice and deliberate disregard for her rights.
Lew Chimes:But there was a second claim that their treatment of Nicole was motivated by bias on the count of her gender.
Rachel de Leon:The town and the officers fight back in a legal battle that will drag on for years. They claim Nicole knew the story she told police wasn’t true, but she signed a sworn written statement anyway. So, the officers could legally arrest her. Lawyers for the town also argued that police didn’t discriminate against Nicole, and in fact showed compassion. They say Colangelo assured her that just because her story had changed didn’t mean he wasn’t listening. They asked the court to stop the case from going to trial. The town’s request lands on the desk of Judge Vanessa L. Bryant. She was appointed by President George W. Bush and had been active in Republican politics. Here she is at her confirmation hearing.
Judge Vanessa L…:I listen actively and attentively. I decide fairly and decisively and efficiently.
Rachel de Leon:Judge Bryant issues a meticulous 51-page decision. It points out the sloppy police work that led to Nicole’s arrest, including failing to update the arrest warrant with Nicole’s latest statement. Had a judge or prosecutor known she tried to reach Colangelo several times and amend her statement, she might never have been arrested. Then the judge addresses the gender bias claim. She says, “A reasonable jury might think that Colangelo believing Calvin’s story, and then suggesting Nicole fabricated hers for financial gain is a sign that he was siding with the man in this case.” But to Lew, the most important thing the judge writes is this. “The alleged false statement was an omission of a completed sex act that plaintiff was not under any duty to disclose.”
Lew Chimes:A victim has no duty to make an affirmative statement.
Rachel de Leon:In other words, a victim is not obligated to tell the police their full story, and an omission is not a lie, contrary to what police claimed.
Lew Chimes:That was a recognition that sexual assault survivors are often reluctant to come forward, if at all and may come forward in piecemeal, and we don’t want to penalize them for that.
Rachel de Leon:All these issues the judge is pointing out weared down the town’s main argument, that Colangelo and Gomper should be given qualified immunity. It’s a common defense in cases of police misconduct. The idea behind it is that police officers need some level of protection from lawsuits so that they can make difficult decisions in the line of duty without hesitating. It’s a thick protective shield, and the only way to pierce it is to prove that a police officer is plainly incompetent or knowingly violated a law. And in Nicole’s case, Judge Bryant writes that a jury could reasonably find both to be true. Judge Bryant is especially critical of the officer’s decision to switch the case on a sexual assault victim who is visibly upset. She says a jury could find the officer’s conduct beyond all possible bounds of decency. The judge decides the case should go to trial, but the town and officers keep trying to prevent that, so they appeal to the next highest court. Their arguments before the judges stream online.
Speaker 16:The next case is Chase v. Town of Cantor.
Rachel de Leon:Nicole tunes in.
Nicole Chase:I was listening to it the whole day and I was really sad. I was really scared.
Rachel de Leon:An attorney for the officers tells the judges that Nicole intentionally lied and misled them, but the judges pushed back and one of them says, “Even if it was true, should she be arrested?”
Speaker 17:Why would a reasonable police officer arrest her in these circumstances? Does it make any sense to arrest her?
Rachel de Leon:The lawyer responds and says, “Yes, because it’s a crime.” Then the issue with the sloppy warrant comes up again. It’s hard to hear, but Lew tells the judges that the warrant contains a major lie.
Lew Chimes:…A polygraph, and then lie about the polygraph in the warrant.
Speaker 19:I’m sorry, they lied about the polygraph and the warrant?
Lew Chimes:Yes.
Rachel de Leon:Nicole’s arrest warrant refers to the fact that Nodine took two polygraph tests, but that’s not true.
Speaker 19:Now that I think could quite reasonably be read to be misleading a judge. I can tell you if I were submitted an affidavit like this, I’d be pretty angry and I’d think, “Wait a minute, you led me to believe there were two polygraphs.”
Rachel de Leon:Colangelo’s Bluff has made it into Nicole’s arrest warrant, and there’s more. That one polygraph Calvin took, he failed it and the warrant leaves that out.
Speaker 19:Well, if they thought that Nodine had failed a polygraph, they might think that there was a sexual assault, and therefore she was telling the truth.
Rachel de Leon:The judges affirmed the lower court’s decision to go to trial. Nicole feels vindicated.
Nicole Chase:It just meant a lot because that’s a big court to just dismiss something, and it meant the world to me that they were on my side and not their side.
Rachel de Leon:But the town and officers won’t let it go, and appeal all the way to the US Supreme Court. But before it’s time for the court to review the case, the town settles and the appeal is withdrawn from the Supreme Court. I asked for the amount of the settlement, but Lew said it’s confidential. By this time, both Colangelo and Gomper have left the Canton Police Department. Colangelo’s a security director for a local organization, and Gomper’s a police dispatcher at a town nearby.

To memorialize Nicole’s victory, Lew frames the letter he got from the Supreme Court dismissing the case, and gives it to Nicole.
Nicole Chase:Oh. Oh.
Lew Chimes:I thought-
Nicole Chase:Thank you. Yeah, that means a lot.
Rachel de Leon:It’s framed in black and gold, and the document is stamped with the US Supreme Court Seal and Eagle. Nicole reads it allowed.
Nicole Chase:“The foregoing joint stipulation of dismissal of the petition for…” I want to say right.
Lew Chimes:Writ of [inaudible].
Nicole Chase:Writ. Of what?
Lew Chimes:[inaudible].
Nicole Chase:Yep, that. Having been received by…
Rachel de Leon:This all sounds kind of administrative, but for Nicole, this document represents the end of a painful chapter in her life.
Nicole Chase:Hereby dismiss…
Rachel de Leon:Even after this happy ending, settling with Calvin and the town, Nicole still divided about whether there was justice in her case.
Nicole Chase:I feel like at the end of the day that a person, if they do it to somebody should end up behind bars. Something that makes them not want to do it again, or hurt somebody ever again. I don’t know.
Rachel de Leon:Calvin was never charged in this case. Nodine’s restaurant is long gone, but their meat processing plant is up and running. Calvin still works in the family business.
Speaker 1:That was Reveal’s Rachel de Leon. Our story was produced by Katherine Maskowski. Ray’s been investigating cases like this one across the country. Don’t miss her documentary on Netflix, Victim Suspect, starting May 23rd.

Our lead producer for this week’s show is Katherine Maskowski. She had help from Katherine Steyer Martinez. Cynthia Rodriguez edited the show. Additional editing by Reveal’s Kate Howard, and special thanks to Amanda Pike. Nikki Frick and Kim Frita are our fact-checkers. Sarah Cohen was our data consultant. We had research help from Betty Marquez, Skylar Glover, Vanessa Ocha Villio, and Elena Neal Sachs. Victoria Berenetski is our general counsel. Our production manager is Steven Rascon, original score and sound designed by the dynamic duo, Jay Breezy, Mr. Jim Briggs, and Fernando my man Arruda. Our digital producer is Sarah Merck. Our CEO is Robert Rosenthal. Our COO is Maria Feldman. Our interim executive producers are Brett Meyers and Taki Teleditas. Our theme music is by Camorado, Lightning. Support for Reveal’s provided by the Ford Foundation, the Riva and David Logan Foundation, the John D and Catherine T MacArthur Foundation, the Jonathan Logan Family Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Park Foundation, and the Helman Foundation. Reveal is a co-production of the Center for Investigative Reporting in PRX. I’m Al Letson, and remember there is always more to the story.

Rachel de Leon is a reporter and producer for TV and documentaries for Reveal. De Leon has worked in video for more than 10 years as a videographer and producer. Throughout 2017, she was the coordinating producer for Glassbreaker Films – an initiative from The Center for Investigative Reporting to support female filmmakers – helping to produce five half-hour documentaries for national and festival distribution, and more than 20 online minidocumentaries. In 2016, she won two Emmys for her work on the web series "The Dead Unknown" and the PBS NewsHour segment "Deadly Oil Fields." In 2014, she completed her first short documentary, “Cab City,” for her master’s thesis in the documentary program at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. De Leon is based in Reveal’s Emeryville, California, office.

Katharine Mieszkowski is a senior reporter and producer for Reveal. She's also been a senior writer for Salon and Fast Company. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, Rolling Stone, Mother Jones, Slate and on NPR's "All Things Considered."

Her coverage has won national awards, including the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award two years in a row, an Online News Association Award, a Webby Award and a Society of Environmental Journalists Award. Mieszkowski has a bachelor's degree from Yale University. She is based in Reveal's Emeryville, California, office.

Kathryn Styer Martínez (she/ella) is a former production assistant for Reveal. She studies audio and photojournalism at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. She is also a Greater Good Science Center reporting fellow, focusing on Latino well-being.

Martínez was the 2020-21 Toni Randolph reporting fellow at Minnesota Public Radio, the 2019-20 New Economy Reporting Project fellow and the former director of KGPC-LP FM, Peralta Community Radio. Her work has appeared in El Tecolote, The Oaklandside, MPR News, National Public Radio, Outside Online, Talk Poverty, New Life Quarterly and Making Contact.

She earned bachelor’s degrees in Raza studies and political science from San Francisco State University.

Kate Howard (she/her) is an investigative editor for Reveal. Previously, she was managing editor at the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting. She spent nearly 14 years as a reporter, including stints at The Tennessean, The Florida Times-Union and the Omaha World-Herald. Her work has been the recipient of two national Investigative Reporters & Editors Awards. Howard is based in Louisville, Kentucky.

Nikki Frick is the associate editor for research and copy for Reveal. She previously worked as a copy editor at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and held internships at The Boston Globe, the Los Angeles Times and She has a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and was an American Copy Editors Society Aubespin scholar. Frick is based in Milwaukee.

Vanessa Ochavillo (she/her)  is a production assistant with Reveal’s documentary team through the Stanford Rebele Journalism Internship Program. She is a recent graduate of the master’s journalism program at Stanford University. Over the past year, her reporting focused on labor, specifically rampant wage theft in the construction and restaurant industries. Her work has been published by the Pacific Daily News, KQED, The Sacramento Bee, The Mercury News in San Jose and SFGate.Ochavillo holds a bachelor’s degree in human biology from Stanford and a master’s in journalism from Stanford. She is based in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Elena Neale-Sacks (she/her) was a research assistant for Reveal. She pursued a master's degree at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. Her focus is investigative reporting and longform audio. She has reported and edited for the UC Santa Cruz student newspaper and hyperlocal news website Oakland North and worked with CalMatters on their Votebeat project during the 2020 general election. Her reporting on young voters aired on KQED and her 2019 investigation into sexual and racial harassment allegations against a UCSC professor contributed to the professor's resignation. Neale-Sacks is passionate about telling stories about and for underrepresented communities for radio and print. She holds a bachelor of arts degree in politics with a minor in Latin American and Latinx studies.

Steven Rascón (he/they) is the production manager for Reveal. He is pursuing a master's degree at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism with a Kaiser Permanente Institute for Health Policy Fellowship. His focus is investigative reporting and audio documentary. He has written for online, magazines and radio. His reporting on underreported fentanyl overdoses in Los Angeles' LGBTQ community aired on KCRW and KQED. Rascón is passionate about telling diverse stories for radio through community engagement. He holds a bachelor of fine arts degree in theater arts and creative writing.

Jim Briggs III is the senior sound designer, engineer and composer for Reveal. He supervises post-production and composes original music for the public radio show and podcast. He also leads Reveal's efforts in composition for data sonification and live performances.

Prior to joining Reveal in 2014, Briggs mixed and recorded for clients such as WNYC Studios, NPR, the CBC and American Public Media. Credits include “Marketplace,” “Selected Shorts,” “Death, Sex & Money,” “The Longest Shortest Time,” NPR’s “Ask Me Another,” “Radiolab,” “Freakonomics Radio” and “Soundcheck.” He also was the sound re-recording mixer and sound editor for several PBS television documentaries, including “American Experience: Walt Whitman,” the 2012 Tea Party documentary "Town Hall" and “The Supreme Court” miniseries. His music credits include albums by R.E.M., Paul Simon and Kelly Clarkson.

Briggs' work with Reveal has been recognized with an Emmy Award (2016) and two Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards (2018, 2019). Previously, he was part of the team that won the Dart Award for Excellence in Coverage of Trauma for its work on WNYC’s hourlong documentary special “Living 9/11.” He has taught sound, radio and music production at The New School and Eugene Lang College and has a master's degree in media studies from The New School. Briggs is based in Reveal's Emeryville, California, office.

Fernando Arruda is a sound designer, engineer and composer for Reveal. As a multi-instrumentalist, he contributes to the original music, editing and mixing of the weekly public radio show and podcast. He has held four O-1 visas for individuals with extraordinary abilities. His work has been recognized with Peabody, duPont-Columbia, Edward R. Murrow, Gerald Loeb, Third Coast and Association of Music Producers awards, as well as Emmy and Pulitzer nominations. Prior to joining Reveal, Arruda toured as an international DJ and taught music technology at Dubspot and ESRA International Film School. He worked at Antfood, a creative audio studio for media and TV ads, and co-founded a film-scoring boutique called the Manhattan Composers Collective. He worked with clients such as Marvel, MasterClass and Samsung and ad agencies such as Framestore, Trollbäck+Company, BUCK and Vice. Arruda releases experimental music under the alias FJAZZ and has performed with many jazz, classical and pop ensembles, such as SFJAZZ Monday Night Band, Art&Sax quartet, Krychek, Dark Inc. and the New York Arabic Orchestra. His credits in the podcast and radio world include NPR’s “51 Percent,” WNYC’s “Bad Feminist Happy Hour” and its live broadcast of Orson Welles’ “The Hitchhiker,” Wondery’s “Detective Trapp,” MSNBC’s “Why Is This Happening?” and NBC’s “Born to Rule,” to name a few. Arruda also has a wide catalog of composed music for theatrical, orchestral and chamber music formats, some of which has premiered worldwide. He holds a master’s degree in film scoring and composition from NYU Steinhardt. The original music he makes with Jim Briggs for Reveal can be found on Bandcamp.

Taki Telonidis is an interim executive producer for Reveal. Previously, he was the media producer for the Western Folklife Center, where he created more than 100 radio features for NPR’s "All Things Considered," "Weekend Edition" and other news magazines. He has produced and directed three public television specials, including "Healing the Warrior’s Heart," a one-hour documentary that explores how the ancient spiritual traditions of our nation’s first warriors, Native Americans, are helping today’s veterans diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. Telonidis also was senior content editor for NPR’s "State of the Re:Union." Before moving to the West, he worked for NPR in Washington, where he was senior producer of "Weekend All Things Considered" between 1994 and 1998. His television and radio work has garnered a George Foster Peabody Award, three Rocky Mountain Emmy Awards and the Overseas Press Club Award for breaking news. Telonidis is based in Salt Lake City.

Al Letson is a playwright, performer, screenwriter, journalist, and the host of Reveal. Soul-stirring, interdisciplinary work has garnered Letson national recognition and devoted fans.