District Attorney fined for conflict-of-interest violations

The DA violated the state’s conflict-of-interest law twice in one month.

Robert Galibois addresses supporters at his victory party in 2022. —Courtesy WCAI

The local district attorney has been ordered to pay a $5,000 civil penalty for violating the state’s conflict-of-interest law.

The Massachusetts State Ethics Commission, in a decision announced Wednesday, found that Robert Galibois, district attorney for the Cape and the Islands, used the resources of his office to further the interests of himself and a campaign donor in two separate instances.

In the first instance, the commission states that Galibois was involved in a car accident in his state vehicle on Feb. 23 last year, just over a month after he was sworn into office. After the Barnstable Police Department issued Galibois a warning for an improper U-turn, a marked lanes violation, and failure to file an accident report, “Galibois directed his second assistant DA to draft a press release … issued on DA’s Office letterhead,” the ethics commission said in a press release issued Wednesday, May 1.

According to prior reporting, Galibois’ office sent out a statement that said he fully cooperated with law enforcement, and that photographs of his car showed no identifiable damage. His statement at the time commended efforts of the local police department, and he took responsibility for the accident.

Galibois’ press release, the commission found, “was designed to turn the public narrative of the accident in Galibois’ favor.”

In reference to the “so-called car accident,” as Galibois referred to the incident in his own statement issued on May 1, he said he directed his staff to issue the press release in response to news reports, and to clarify the situation’s circumstances.

In a separate instance, also from February of last year, the ethics commission found that the D.A. used his office to further the interests of a campaign donor. 

The ethics commission said that CapeBuilt, a campaign donor of his election, offered to provide rental apartments to Galibois’ office staff before the apartments were publicly advertised. 

According to the disposition agreement signed by Galibois, the text message from the owner of CapeBuilt to Galibois’ personal cell phone said, “In the past we have reached out to Barnstable Police and Fire as apartments became available … and thought … new staff coming in your office might have an interest as well. Our goal has always been to provide great housing options for the folks who make Barnstable work!”

“Galibois then sent an officewide email informing his staff of the available apartments, and offering to provide the donor’s contact information to anyone interested,” the ethics commission said in the press release. “Galibois subsequently referred two of his assistant DAs to the donor.”

In response, Galibois said that he was trying to help his staff.

“Knowing that some members in my office were, like so many throughout the Cape and Islands, having difficulty searching for housing, I circulated this opportunity to my staff by way of an office email,” said Galibois.

Galibois said he didn’t receive or expect to receive any benefit from circulating the email, but the ethics commission found he violated the conflict-of-interest law because he used his work email to give his staff an advantage in the housing market. 

David Wilson, executive director of the ethics commission, said in Wednesday’s announcement that Galibois used public resources to further both his own private interests and those of one of his campaign donors.

“A core principle of the conflict-of-interest law is that public resources, such as public agency media releases, email, and staff worktime, must not be used to further private interests,” said Wilson. “Public resources are to be used for the public’s benefit.”

Galibois admitted to his violations of the conflict-of-interest law, and waived his right to a hearing in a disposition agreement. According to the ethics commission, he has paid the $5,000 fine.


  1. Wow. With all the egregious ethics violations out there, I guess trying to help your staff find housing ranks right up there. *face palm*. And then he gets whacked for trying to do the right thing by being transparent about a traffic incident. I guess covering it up would have been better??

  2. And what sells newspapers seems to be sensationalized articles about tiny infractions yet the important issues of the day are getting no mention in the paper at all. Instead of talking about the good work people do they are making a big deal over nothing it seems. The health issues on the island are much more important and fixable and I am sending in a letter to the editor in this regard. I wrote a year ago to see if we can have a substantive discussion about the long COVID, POTS, and environmentally triggered alcoholism, mental problems and drug addiction plaguing the population here.

    • Carolyn, you’re absolutely right! Supreme Court justices accepted hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of benefits and didn’t think it was worth mentioning. And a DA is penalized for trying to help people.

      • He was fined what is a relatively small amount for trying to help people with a personal in at the expense of the general public. That is a reasonable penalty. No one said it’s the worst offense going. It certainly isn’t. But it’s still not ethical under the law. “Two wrongs don’t…” and all that jazz.

        That the DA did not contest the fine tells me he agrees.

        You’ve said, Mary, that we need more affordable housing. I would think you’d see why this was wrong, as that’s the housing market affected.

  3. No mention that he is a Democrat or are we not supposed to care because when they break the law it’s not a big deal. Another democrat who thinks the rules of law are for others. Nothing to see here move along.

    • Bob — he didn’t break the law– he was accused of ethics
      violations. No mention of a cover up, he admitted he
      was at fault in the accident, and really– he gave some
      advanced notice to his employees about possible housing.
      What a witch hunt. This in no different than paying bribes
      to cover up sexual affairs, cooking the books to hide them,
      lying about possessing stolen top secret documents and
      inciting a violent mob to overthrow the constitutionally elected
      presidential elect.
      Your Democrat derangement syndrome is showing.

      • Poor Don doesn’t even understand It was the conflict of interest law. Yes, it was a law. Similar article in the Boston Globe today, which does not hide the fact that it was a Democrat in his first term that broke the conflict of interest law. And happy to see how Trump lives inside your head any chance you get. This article had nothing to do with Trump, but he is foremost in your thinking.

        • Bob– Ok — What difference does it make if he
          is a democrat ? This article had nothing to do with the fact
          he was a democrat , but it seems to be foremost in your
          thinking. I never mentioned any names, by the way.
          Speaking of foremost thoughts , it’s fortunate he doesn’t have
          a Jewish sounding name,so we can be spared some serious
          accusations of anti-semitism for fining him.

          • One doesn’t get accused of antisemitism for nothing.

            One gets accused, and socially convicted, of antisemitism when one repeatedly uses textbook, dictionary-defined hate speech and directs it with venom at a Jewish person.

            It’s not complicated. Despite any self-conscious, churlish protestations from the many responsible, it’s really, really not that hard to understand.

            Which is why those not guilty of antisemitism get it and can only shake their heads in disgust.

            You know who never has to defend themselves against accusations of Jew-hatred? People who are respectful of Jews. Spread the word. I think I’m onto something big.

    • Should political affiliation always be listed?
      So we know who to cheer for?
      Red Sox, or Yankees

    • Why is party affiliation important to you?
      Should all news articles about Trump point out that he is a Registered Republican?
      And not an elected Republican.

      • Albert, how do you know that trump was an elected Republican? Maybe the 2016 election was stolen.

      • It’s always so strange to me when liberal left democrats use trump’s sexual assault conviction (not rape) as a reason to confront a Trump voter or a no-way-Biden voter, with a self righteous “how could you?” At the same time, this how-could-you confronter had not uttered one word of compassion or demands against Hamas for the silenced Jewish girls and women so sexually brutalized and paraded in Gaza, and for the kidnapped women and girls who are still being raped as they are held captive. Mary, can you explain how that makes sense? There has not been a word of support or demands for release from liberal left women’s groups on the island— or nationally. No celebrity spokesperson has spoken up for these abused women, unless they’re Jewish. No politically active lesbian/women’s empowerment group has uttered a peep on the island in support of these sexually brutalized women and their grieving families. Why do you think that is, Mary? I think it’s hypocrisy and antisemitism. Pick and choose caring for minority powerless, based on who is hated and who is not, is why. Thats what I think. The last time I asked you about why you care only about Trump’s sexual assaults, and really, no one else’s, even Biden’s creepy behavior, you told me I sound upset and avoided addressing your hypocrisy on the matter. No answer is a loud and clear answer. So is gaslighting to avoid answering.

        This is exactly the hypocrisy that will get Trump reelected. Former liberals want nothing to do with the hypocrisy and antisemitism within the democrat party, not just the fringes. No acknowledgement of this outrageously awful and anti-American behavior has ruined dems. It’s the elephant in the room. The “how could you” question should be asked while looking in the mirror if you’ve not said a word in support of the brutalized Jewish women and their families, not to mention all the “trophies” Hamas savages phoned their mommies to brag they’d murdered. Silence is complicity. And pick and choose which illegality is too trivial for dems to care about, if a dem commits it, is more hypocrisy.

  4. The donor shouldn’t have offered. The DA should know better than to accept. While it’s perfectly fine to want your staff to have housing, this is not the way to go about securing it for them. Preferential treatment is wrong, especially when resources are limited. If there were tons of rentals to go around for the public, I may see it as a lesser offense. But in 2024, this means someone else—someone with no connections—missed out.

    • Katie– so let me get something straight here. It seems that
      any slight about anything that the state of Israel has done or is doing
      is considered by some to be anti-semitic. Bernie Sanders (who is Jewish)
      said it well.
      On the other hand, some radical islamophobes have never once
      expressed any sympathy for the innocent people in Gaza.
      As a matter of fact, at least one person on this forum has stated
      that “there are no innocent Palestinians”, and that they are “invented”
      people”. I have many times expressed my support for Israel, my
      sympathies for the victims and families of the Oct 7 terrorist attack.
      I have decried the policies and ideology of Hamas.
      And yet, I am continually targeted an anti semitic.
      Perhaps it’s because the radical “palestinian haters” have cowered
      everyone else here into a corner and they are afraid to offer even a grain
      of criticism about is becoming increasingly clear is genocide for fear of
      being labeled an anti-semite.
      So– anti-semitism is bad– as Bernie says, it is vile and disgusting.
      I agree– I guess that’s “proof” that I hate Jews.
      So anti-semitism is vile and disgusting because it is rooted
      in ethnic hatred. I will point out that those who are most
      prone to point their fingers at the alleged anti-semites have never
      said anything in support of the people of Gaza.
      Sorry, but hatred of a group of people based on ethnicity and
      culture is just as bad if the hatred is directed towards Jews,
      Palestinians, blacks, hispanic,Ukrainians or anyone else.
      Unless of course, you think that your cultural heritage
      is more important or better than everyone else’s .
      And that kind of attitude , as we have learned from history,
      is what gave the nazi’s the idea that they had the right to
      perpetrate genocide on the Jewish people–I am sure they
      though none of them were innocent.
      I do not think that any society has the right to commit
      genocide– regardless of who started it–
      Call me what you will, but I am not on the wrong side of

      • Well Don, at least you are on the right side of the electric debate. The Chinese car manufacturers are planning to release 71 new fully electric car models this year. The Chinese are going to eat our lunch! In the US manufacturers are only releasing about 40 fully electric cars models (and some of those models are not US made). The Chinese already have the largest windmill farms and the actual largest windmill. They also have the largest solar farms. And the Chinese are buying every Troy ounce of gold they can get their hands on. The Republican propaganda is crippling the US energy market. Oil speaks loud and clear.

        • Mary, you claimed to be deeply concerned under a different article about antisemitism as it pertains to the alt-right. There are plenty of examples on this site and across the country right now of that very kind of prejudice, even fascism, but this time, it’s coming from the other side. The left.

          You have changed the subject to cars rather than speak on it.
          Odd. If you are only invested when it’s conservatives spreading hate, then that concern is for party, not Jews. Not inclusion.

          Not preventing facism. I doubt Albright would approve of anything the Dems are doing right now. Blocking students and professors because they’re Jewish is straight-up Nazism. Do you condemn this?

          • Namaste, Katie Lane. There is enough name calling, attacking, and condemnation being used already. That’s not my game. If it’s your game, be my guest. You’re welcome to my share.
            Peace be unto you.

          • Katie, antisemites cannot condemn Nazis blocking Jewish students and professors. When someone refuses to answer a question like you asked, you have your answer, and so does everyone reading.

        • Mary Hansen, Katie’s “game” is truth. interesting you call survival against hatred a “game”. Thanks for your answer. You could not be more clear.

      • Would’ve replied sooner, but I’ve been busy. OJ Simpson hit me up on the Ouija to lecture about nonviolence.

        Since my carpal tunnel already hates me, I’ll try to stick to the highlights:

        “It seems that any slight about anything that the state of Israel has done or is doing is considered by some to be anti-semitic.”

        That’s not my personal standard. Hate speech, for one, is antisemitism, not civil disagreement. I’ve been participating in discussions on Israel for about fifteen years. I have disagreed with Netanyahu more than once, primarily about the West Bank. No one has labeled me an antisemite.

        I keep hearing nonsense such as, “You can criticize anyone except the Jews.” Really? Not only can Jews be criticized with impunity, they can be chased, blocked, attacked, threatened, stolen from, driven out of school… and still remain unsupported.

        “I guess that’s “proof” that I hate Jews.”

        The internet is a pachyderm: it never forgets. There is plenty of evidence of hate directed at Jews. You posted a lot of it. We should stand by our words. If you can’t, if it’s been shown that you were wrong, accept the correction and do the right thing. I’m a simple chick. I don’t see how that’s hard.

        I broke down why those wince-worthy insults equal antisemitism under an article titled “Venezuelan asylum seekers win ‘major’ ruling”. Hope you had a chance to read all of the relevant comments. FYI, I am actually reserved—perhaps too much so—about labeling people as antisemitic. Sadly, there are some behaviors and language that leave no room for doubt or opinion.

        “I will point out that those who are most prone to point their fingers at the alleged anti-semites have never said anything in support of the people of Gaza.”

        If you were referring to me, I’ve been mentioning what I see as a truly pro-Palestine message since October. If you meant Jackie, then I already provided, with direct quotes, a sampling of her comments that show concern for civilians in Gaza. They can be found under the same article I named above.

        That some choose to selectively parse remarks with a negative bias, discarding vital info and nuance as they go, is not my responsibility.

        It is not difficult to engage with this topic in a respectful manner that takes all innocent life into account. Much of the global population simply doesn’t want to. The world is keen to find excuses to chant for the elimination of Jews, and they have, from London to France to Australia to the US of A.

        I do not think caring about Gaza is antisemitic. Never have. If I did, I would be a hypocrite. I just don’t express my concern by mocking Jews. Novel, huh?

        On a more personal note, I did not want things here to end up this way. I detest tension. Stupidly—I can be something of a useful idiot myself—I hoped that you would come around and either leave Jackie alone or see where you went wrong.

        Every time she would write something vulnerable about her heritage, her experiences, I thought it might break through the divide. I’d see you reply, starting off kinda civil, and go, “Oh good, all this meanness can stop. He gets it.”

        But you always went right back to slamming her for her identity. What is the point in continuing down that path? Who does it serve?

        Rhetorical. You don’t have to answer.

        (“Bad job, Katie. I STILL hate you.” – my carpal tunnel)

  5. This article is NOT newsworthy considering all the challenges the Cape and islands continue to struggle with (i.e. mental health issues, substance use disorder, youth related challenges, housing/homelessness, etc)…And there are abuses of power and corruption that occur, even on MV (and I’m NOT referring to the DA’s office). These issues SHOULD BE discussed but instead, the media and others remain silent; opting to focus on a DA that made a mistake. And was trying to assist his staff w a primary problem – housing. This isn’t news worth printing…

    • Sylvia, you have acknowledged my previous comment that when a Democrat does something wrong it is not news and let’s look away. And yes, whenever we talk about politicians it’s always mentioned in the article whether they’re Democrat or Republican it’s standard journalism. The DA is not perfect and it absolutely was wrong for him to try to help out his staff or his friends unfairly. You seem to want to have closed government when it suits you, but I prefer to have open government all the time good and bad.

  6. Still waiting for Mr. Galibois to publish the Cape & Islands DA office’s Brady List ONLINE, as he promised.

  7. A blatant hatred of Jews is made evident by the antisemite, not by his accusers. Whining and throwing blame for his own words on others, shows an immature obsession with his accusers and not with why people see him as antisemitic. OWN IT is the best advice I can give to an antisemite. Then he can examine where it comes from and how best to rid oneself of an ugly bias– if that’s what an antisemite wants.

    I for one have been the target of anti-Jewish hate speech in these pages, in clear viloation of the Terms of Service Agreement, but I am not allowed to directly quote the personal attacks that included antisemitic tropes, gaslighting, false accusations of who I supposedly hate (ugly Palestinian girls was a doozy, though), blood libels, noticing the switching from “genocide” to “I never used the word genocide”, back to “it’s a genocide” again. Had Israel wanted to commit a genocide, the war would have been over October 8th.

    “One gets accused, and socially convicted, of antisemitism when one repeatedly uses textbook, dictionary-defined hate speech and directs it with venom at a Jewish person.” ~ Katie Lane

    When an antisemite blames others for his own antisemitic words, there cannot be a healing and hard look at himself to come to understand why he has been convicted of antisemitism in society’s eyes. Repeatedly listing all the times and ways the antisemite did not say something antisemitic does not undo all the times he did.

      • My grandmother was born a Hess. Maybe we’re related. You’re probably Jewish because Hess is an Ashkenazi Jewish name. Welcome to the tribe.

        • Mary, I don’t play gamss. I was direct. I clearly did not call you any names. I did not attack you. I recounted what has been said and asked if you condemn blatant acts of antisemitism.

          I asked you to clarify your stance, as I’ve done under previous articles. That is the point of these discussions and well within civil communication.

          It should not be difficult to call out Nazi-esque acts. Left, right, or center.

          Your lack of an answer is an answer. Noted.

          • Great comment, Katie. My response to Mary’s excuse for not answering was censored, as have most of my comments thanking you and showing you my appreciation for your painstaking exposures of so many antisemitic lies.

    • Jackie– I hesitated to call the military action in Gaza genocide, as in the beginning, it was a military operation. Simple –I did not refer to it as genocide until it was clear that it was.
      it is now clearly a genocidal effort. Sorry– you can’t justify deliberately starving 2 million people by saying it is a defensive operation. Israel has the right to exist and to defend itself.
      it does not have the right to impose a famine on millions of people. And just to make it clear– Hamas had no right to orchestrate the terrorist attacks of Oct 7. Nor did they have any right to misappropriate humanitarian aid intended for the people of Gaza and build military grade tunnels and acquire weapons. Nor do they have anything that resembles an excuse to use innocent civilians as human shields– They are worse than the most dedicated Maga Maggots.

      • Untrue, Keller. This is more antisemitic lying from you.

        “I stand with Israel, but I do not condone genocide.” ~keller, about a week after 10/7. That’s how long Keller has been happy to use the word, genocide.

        He’s had no trouble at all in his false claims of genocide. Keller does not know what a genocide is. Neither does a single person on here who calls Israel’s right to exist and defend itself a genocide. There is no genocide from the Israeli side. The intent of genocide is openly admitted by Hamas. It is written within their charter.

        In fact, Keller has gone back and forth about using the word genocide after reading what the definition of the word actually is and depending on what CNN is promoting at any given moment. Now Keller is emboldened by the explosion of antisemitism falsely calling Israel’s defense of it’s people and land, while doing everything humanly possible to save the civilians used as shields by hamas in gaza, a “genocide”. Antisemites also accuse Israel of “indiscriminate bombing””. Keller does it frequently. It’s totally acceptable among liberal lefties to use this and other antisemitic lies, as these same lies are told by every antisemite on the planet, including the terrorist savages who rape and torture and kidnap as a war “strategy”. Terrorist savages happily agree it’s a genocide. Terrorist savages approve of college protesters calling it a genocide. They approve it so much they support the organizers of these illegal protests with tents, pamphlets and money to help spread the same lie that Keller, Mintz and K. Scott have been trying so hard to spread on the Vineyard. “It’s a genocide!” That’s what’s wrong with the stupid college protests. That’s what’s wrong when a liberal leftie who thinks this is a “game” and changes topics to talking about cars because she wil not say antisemitism is wrong. That’s the core of it: antisemitism. The false accusations of Israel commiting a genocide. Really, it’s so stupid I can’t keep defending Israel’s rights and obligations to Jew haters wanting to deny them. Calling Israel’s right to self-determination and self defense a “genocide” is Jew-Hatred. Nothing more, nothing less. It’s not a genocide. And yet antisemites think that if they all band together and call it a genoicide, it will stick. It won’t. You’re on the wrong side of history– the side of hate, prejudice, and lies. Keller wishes it were a genocide so that he could validate his antisemitism. Jew haters are always looking for ways to justify their hateful prejudices: colonizers! apartheid! genocide! Keller has yet to call for surrender and release of all the hostages so that the killing can stop. Hamas proudly “sacrifices” their own babies to be martyrs so that world opinion of dolts can be against Israel’s “genocide”. People are not smart enough to know when they’ve been misled, manipulated, and behaving like useful idiots– who both sides are laughing at. It’s quite easy to manipulate established antisemites-in-denial who are always looking for excuses for their hatred of Israel and Jews. We see it over and over in these pages.

        And then, maybe after drinking or smoking or whatever, we read how people who regularly dehumanize Americans into “maggots” just don’t have enough hate in their heart to think a certain way. They’re all about love– and pretending to be so famiiar with Judaism’s culture and practices that on Yom Hashoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day, the most vicious antisemitic attacks in these pages were launched against me, for a change.

        You can be against war, pray for peace and have compassion for innocents as I do, and pray that everyone has the food and shelter and peace they deserve, but that’s not what these Jew-hating rampages have been about here at the mvTimes. The contradictions about all of it, starting with “it’s a genocide”, “I never said it was a genocide”, “i’ve been reluctant to call it a genocide” back to “it’s a genocide”, is enough to drive Ingrid Bergman’s character in “Gaslight” to the nearest psych unit.

      • If Israel had ANY genocidal intent, the war would have been over October 8th. Either that, or one of the world’s best equipped military and most advanced intelligence is suddenly really bad at doing the job that has always made them victorious against evil forces of Jew-hatred attacking them since Israel was born.

  8. *Whom. And *fascism. And *games. When I stop hitting the keyboard hard enough to form words, it’s time to quit.

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