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East Kingston chief agrees to resign over use of inmates by department

By Jason Schreiber
Union Leader Correspondent

February 05. 2014 1:14PM
The investigation began in May after Rockingham County jail inmate Jarred Brisbois allegedly broke into the East Kingston Police Department's evidence room and stole heroin, broke into an officer's locker, and drove a police cruiser while he was unsupervised on May 11. 

EAST KINGSTON – Police Chief Reid Simpson has agreed to resign following a state investigation into concerns over the use of inmates at the police department.

The state Attorney General's Office announced Wednesday that Simpson would resign, effective immediately, after the probe that began last summer following an incident involving a jail inmate who was allegedly left alone and broke into the station's evidence room.

"After thoroughly investigating the inmate trustee issues and overall management of the police department, it has been determined that, while there was substantial mismanagement, lack of proper oversight and improper conduct on behalf of Chief Simpson, his conduct and his actions do not rise to the level of provable criminal conduct. Thus, criminal charges will not be initiated," the Attorney General's Office said in a statement.

Given his "mismanagement and lack of oversight," Simpson agreed to step down and permanently relinquished his certification as a police officer and won't seek future employment as an officer.

The investigation was conducted to determine whether any members of the police department could be held criminally liable after the break-in last May.

Inmate Jarred Brisbois was accused of the breaking in and stealing heroin that he later brought back to the jail.

The Rockingham County Attorney's Office claimed Brisbois broke into the evidence room when he was left alone for several hours while performing maintenance work as a trusted inmate through the jail's trusty program.

Simpson and Cpl. Mark Iannuccillo were placed on paid administrative leave last August.

Iannuccillo resigned in September and Simpson remained on paid leave until Jan. 1 when the town stopped paying him.

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