Trial under way for former Windsor Locks police sergeant - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Trial under way for former Windsor Locks police sergeant


The trial of a former Windsor Lock police officer is under way nearly two years after the incident that got him into trouble.

In October 2012, Robert Koistinen's son, Michael Koistinen, also a police officer at the time, got into an off-duty accident that claimed the life of a teenager, and Robert Koistinen is accused of trying to hinder the investigation.

One of the key questions the jury will have to answer regarding Robert Koistinen is if he actually hindered the prosecution of Michael Koistinen, also now a former Windsor Locks police officer, the night of Oct. 29, 2010.

It was then that the state said an off-duty Michael Koistinen drove his car fast, while drunk, down a Windsor Locks street, hitting 15-year-old Henry Dang.

He was on his bike and died as a result of his injuries.

Robert Koistinen is accused of not making an effort to collect evidence, or speak to witnesses at the scene, which happened while he was on duty.

"They sat there prepared to give their information, and no officer took it, the person in charge at the time, Sgt. Robert Koistinen," said Hartford state attorney Gail Hardy.

Elliot Spector, who is the attorney for Robert Koistinen, said his client was emotional on the evening of the accident; however, he remained professional.

"As soon as he found out his son was involved, he knew he had to recluse himself from this situation," he said. 

Judge Julia Dewey told the jury she expects the trial to take about six days, and she wasted no time getting down to business.

Dang's family was seated in the front row of the court room Monday morning.

Michael Koistinen pleaded no contest to second-degree manslaughter and tampering with physical evidence.

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