Tisbury police officer John Dillon -- who has been under fire from the NAACP for allegedly racist acts against the town's only African-American patrolman -- is on indefinite paid administrative leave this week.

Police department and town officials are not publicly discussing the reasons for Mr. Dillon's inactive status. But sources told the Gazette that the reason for Mr. Dillon's administrative leave is a new controversy over allegations that the officer improperly made copies of another officer's computer files. The other officer was Theophilus M. Silvia 3d -- who happens to be the town's only African-American patrolman and the author of a lengthy discrimination complaint filed last year against the town. That complaint is based on a variety of other issues, some of which involve Mr. Dillon, some of which do not. It is being investigated by the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD).

The recent accusation against Mr. Dillon -- the improper copying of computer files -- will be discussed at a hearing Monday before selectmen, police chief John J. McCarthy and a labor attorney.

Mr. Dillon declined to comment on these issues. His attorney will make a statement later, he said.

Mr. McCarthy was away from the Island and could not be reached for comment. Sgt. Rodney Silvia, who is in charge of the department while the chief is away, also declined to comment.

These events follow a maelstrom of recent unpleasant publicity for the Tisbury police department, and Mr. Dillon in particular. Last month, the Vineyard chapter of the NAACP went public with officer T.M. Silvia's MCAD complaint. Filed in stages over the last 12 months, the complaint describes several kinds of harassment.

For instance, a significant portion of the complaint is devoted to broad accusations, including charges that Mr. Silvia was forced to work unfair schedules and that he has been denied the opportunity for training because of his ethnic background, which is African-American and Cape Verdean.

For these offenses, the complaint targets town officials and the police chief.

The complaint also lists specific acts, such as the display of a drawing of Mr. Silvia, which portrays him as hunched over and defeated, an image which, according to some, recalls the historically racist comparison of African-American people to apes. The poster is accompanied by a three-paragraph caption written in a style that ridicules stereotypical African-American speech patterns.

The complaint charges Mr. Dillon with displaying the poster, but Mr. Dillon says he did not produce or display it.

Another incident cited is an episode in which an officer entered the department's computer system and altered a letter written by Mr. Silvia, changing the language so that it reflects stereotypical African-American speech patterns.

In this incident, Mr. Dillon has admitted to changing the letter, but he says it was not a racist act.

The MCAD complaint also describes a litany of additional criticism of Mr. Dillon, basically painting a picture of him as a hotheaded officer with bad judgment. Mr. Dillon has said the portrayal is inaccurate and unfair.

The NAACP has called for Mr. Dillon's dismissal, but town officials -- while declining to publicly discuss personnel issues --maintain that appropriate discipline has been meted out in all cases where they know an offense was committed. Mr. Dillon was on an unpaid suspension for 19 days in March.

Now that Mr. Dillon faces a new accusation, some town officials say the matter shouldn't be tried in the press.

"In this country, you're innocent until proven guilty," said a town official familiar with the situation. "We're fooling around with a man's life here."