An investigation by the Hartford Police Department has found that police acted lawfully when they stopped State Treasurer Denise Nappier in her state car on Sept. 1, but that the officer in question was careless in her duties by not verifying the car’s information with the state Department of Motor Vehicles.
The officer, Jill Kidik, was recommended for retraining in the field of motor vehicle law and investigations.
Here’s the report. You can listen for more during WNPR’s The Colin McEnroe Show Monday at 1 p.m.
Nappier was stopped on September 1st in her state vehicle. She initially told the Hartford Courant that race may have played an issue in the stop. Police union officials later said Nappier was stopped because her car was at the scene of an active emergency call in a vehicle that appeared unregistered.
It was later found that the state car was properly registered and insured.
According to the investigative report, police stopped Nappier in part because they had seen the car in the area before and believed it to be an unmarked law enforcement vehicle.
The police report quotes interviews in which officers said Nappier told them she was being stopped because she was black, but Nappier didn’t mention race in her interview with police investigators. Also, Kidik told investigators that neither race nor gender played a role in the stop – the officer says she couldn’t tell the race or gender of the vehicle’s driver before the stop because it was dark.
Police say in the report that Nappier repeatedly used profanities at the scene. Nappier told police investigators that except for Kidik’s initial standoffish behavior, the three officers involved acted professionally.
Police eventually confiscated Nappier’s car and charged her with motor vehicle violations, after it appeared that the car was unregistered. Earlier this week, a state court judge dismissed the case against her after prosecutors said they would not pursue charges.
At least one contradiction still stands. Police say they offered her a ride home and asked her to call someone to pick her up. Nappier says neither happened.