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Dozens of Arrests in Question After State Brings Charges Against Claremont Officers

Appleswitch via Flickr Creative Commons

The Claremont Police Department has thrown out about 20 recent arrests performed by either Ian Kibbe or Mark Burch, two officers who allegedly faked documents while working for the department earlier this year, according to Chief Mark Chase.

The department’s review of the officers’ cases is ongoing, as is a parallel review of felony-level arrests by the Sullivan County Attorney.  

In cases where a conviction has already been handed down, defendants may be able to ask for a rehearing. 

Both officers have been fired. Kibbe will appear in court next week on charges that he lied in a written report in an attempt to justify a search of a property earlier this year.

The Attorney General’s office is also re-reviewing a 2016 case in which Kibbe shot and killed a man in the city. Kibbe had said that the man was threatening him with a gun, but the perjury charge has cast new suspicion on that report.

Kibbe served as a supervisor to Burch, the other officer. The state investigation into Burch remains open. Kibbe served with the department for about four years, according to Chase. Burch had served just over a year. 

Neither officer was involved in responding last year to a high-profile attack on a young biracial boy in town, according to Chief Chase. The boy’s parents said the attack was racially motivated, and have alleged the Claremont police mishandled the investigation before state authorities got involved. 

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