This summary was prepared by Darien Police Chief Donald B. Anderson on 10/01/2021 and published by DarienCTNews by Blaine Hurty on 10/14/2021.
Notable Police Incidents in Q3 2021:
- During the early morning hours of June 30, two female parties reported being attacked in a parking lot at Darien High School. An officer arrived on scene in less than 60 seconds but was unable to locate a suspect. The initial investigation determined that two female parties were attacked by a single, unknown male assailant as they stood outside of their parked vehicle. The male suspect then fled the area on foot. The two parties were treated for minor injuries sustained as a result of the altercation. A thorough search of the area, including the use of a tracking K-9, was conducted, but no suspect was located. The incident remains under active investigation by the Detective Division.
- During the evening hours on December 20, 2020, motor vehicle burglaries and a car theft were reported from Whaling Road and Goodwives River Road residences. Through investigatory means, a Stratford, CT resident was identified as the suspect in the incidents and he was arrested via warrant in July 2021 for a multitude of larceny and burglary charges.
- On March 13, 2021, officers investigated a motor vehicle burglary at a Nearwater Lane residence, in which a wallet was stolen from an unlocked vehicle. Through investigation, a Bridgeport, CT resident was identified as the suspect. An arrest warrant was applied for and granted, and the subject was taken into custody in July.
- On July 13, on the strength of an arrest warrant, detectives took custody of a Brooklyn, NY resident who had passed forged U.S. currency at two local businesses in 2017.
- On July 30, officers responded to a business on the Post Road for the report of two individuals using fake bank cards. A description of the male subjects was given and they were located a short time later. The subjects, both residents of Queens, NY, were determined to be in possession of stolen credit cards and were issued misdemeanor summonses for Credit Card and Larceny charges.
- On July 31, an Uber driver reported that a male subject fare became physically aggressive towards the driver and began to use racial slurs and make threats of bodily harm. Out of fear, the Uber drive brought the fare to his requested destination in New York state. Attempts to contact the suspect that evening and over the next few days were unsuccessful. On August 9, an arrest warrant for the suspect (a Larchmont, NY resident) was sought and granted. The suspect was charged with Robbery and Intimidation Due To Bias.
- On August 6, a Darien resident was arrested for Sexual Assault 4th, based on an investigation in which he made several unwanted sexual contacts with the victim over the preceding months.
- On August 13, members of the New Canaan Police Department Detective Bureau notified DPD detectives that a New Canaan resident possibly had physical contact with minor children residing in Darien. Through investigatory means, it was determined that the subject had been in contact with minors who reside in Darien for an extended period of time, and, that he had made inappropriate and unlawful contact with, and had taken video/images of, the aforementioned minors. Darien detectives were granted an arrest warrant for the subject, who was charged with Risk of Injury to a Minor (2 Counts), Employing a Minor in an Obscene Performance (2 Counts), and Sexual Assault. The incident remains under active investigation by the Detective Division.
- On August 27, at approximately 11:30 P.M., the Department received a report of a Breach of Peace incident outside of a Tulip Tree Lane residence between an Uber driver and one of his fares. Investigation determined that the Uber driver was the victim in the incident and he sustained minor injuries and was subsequently transported to the hospital. The suspect fled the scene on foot prior to officers’ arrival. Further investigation identified the suspect as male resident of Darien and he was later arrested by warrant on September 1.
- During the overnight hours of September 10, patrol officers observed a suspicious van backed into a driveway perpendicular to Uncle’s Deli. Officers determined that the two occupants of the van had been siphoning used cooking oil into containers in the van. It was further determined that the two men had emptied three 50 gallon drums from behind the Sugar Bowl prior to officers arriving. The two men were placed under arrest and charged with Larceny.
- On May 19, 2021, officers were dispatched to Hollow Tree Ridge Road near Allwood Road on the report of a serious motor vehicle accident with injuries, involving a six-wheeled dump truck. Due to the severity of the incident, the Accident Investigation Team (AIT) responded to the area to reconstruct the scene. Investigation determined that the operator, a Seymour, CT resident, had illegal narcotics in his system and had committed a number of motor vehicle offenses were also identified. An arrest warrant for the above charges was sought and granted, and the subject was arrested on September 15.
Traffic Violation Enforcement:
- Traffic Stops: 284 (Previous Qtr: 358)
- DWI Arrests: 5 (5)
- Summons Arrests: 20 (15)
- Infractions: 144 (147)
- Domestic Violence Arrests: 9 (12)
- Domestic (non-arrest) Incidents: 9 (13)
Key Issues Going Forward Quarter In Review:
- Identifying candidates to fill sworn police officer positions (currently two open positions) and have them hired and ready to attend POST-C Academy in January, 2022. There has been some difficulty with securing viable entry level candidates.
- Identifying and hiring candidates to fill open Telecommunicator/Dispatcher positions (currently two open positions).
- In FY 22 Q3, deploy personnel assigned and funded under an OPM grant to address ongoing motor vehicle thefts and motor vehicle burglaries via our involvement in the “Lower Fairfield County Motor Vehicle Theft Task Force.” Member agencies include Norwalk, Greenwich, Darien, Stamford and potentially New Canaan.
- Continue our involvement with the roll out of “Think Smart Before You Start” traffic safety campaign.
- Begin budget analysis and preparation for FY 23.
- Legal Update training for all sworn staff in early November to be held in two sessions.
- EMT/EMR medical in service training for a significant number of sworn staff.
Quarter In Review:
- In May, one Telecommunicator/Dispatcher resigned his position. The Department hired two (2) new dispatchers to continue efforts to fully civilianize the dispatching function at DPD. Both dispatchers completed their training in September and joined the Department’s current complement.
- In July, one officer resigned his position after 3½ years of service with the PD.
- In early July, Chief Anderson attended the FBI National Training Conference in Orlando, FL.
- On July 17, the Department resumed its hosting of “Coffee with a Cop”, with an event held at CafféNero.
- Town Fireworks returned this year on July 22 at Darien High School and was staffed effectively and without incident.
- On July 26, Officer Derek Laaser was hired by the PD. Officer Laaser, a Milford resident, was previously a member of the Trumbull Police Department and is a veteran of the Marine Corps.Officer Laaser completed his Field Training in September and has joined the Patrol Division.
- In August, Captain Marron attended the three-week Senior Management Institute for Police Training hosted by the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) in Orlando, FL.
- In August, the Department announced an entry level hiring process, to fill Patrol Division vacancies.
- Three (3) newly assigned DPD Dive Team members are being trained and certified.
- Sergeant James Palmieri transferred to the Patrol Division and Sergeant Dan Skoumbros transferred to the Detective Division.
- In September, the Department fully deployed new Body Worn Cameras, Taser 7CQ Conducted Electrical Weapons, and “Signal Sidearm”, which activates an officer’s body camera when his/her duty weapon is unholstered.
- The annual Darien Road race was successfully held on September 19.
- In conjunction with Amtrak Railroad, members of the Department staffed “Operation Clear Track”, a high visibility rail and grade collision safety program aimed towards reducing collisions and violations at railway crossings.
- In September, the Department and The Depot Teen Center resumed its highly-successful Cops & Kids Adventures Program, with an event held at The Depot and further events scheduled for the 2021-2022 school year, to include Empower team-building, Jordan’s IT Ropes Course, bowling, etc.
- In September, female officers took part in “Girls Night Out”, a girls teen group at The Depot. One officer acts as a mentor for Respect-Works, a teen dating violence awareness group.
- Vehicles stolen or entered while left unlocked continues to be problematic across the state and region.
- Two (2) major storms were safely and effectively staffed by members of the Police Department on July 9 and September 1, 2021. Thankfully, there was were no injuries or damage to PD equipment.