“My Brother’s Soul Will Never Rest”

Unless Truth Comes Out about Fatal Crash


The tea kettle screams as Ha Tran completes his thought about his 15-year-old brother, Henry Dang, who died Oct. 29 riding his bike. Around midnight, he was hit by a car driven by Michael Koistinen, an off-duty Windsor Locks cop.

"We thought there was gonna be a cloudy area where we won't ever get the truth," he said.

As Buddhists, the truth is crucial to Ha Tran and his family. 

"When you die, and the truth doesn't come out, that spirit will haunt you. My brother's soul will never rest," he said. "So that's why all we want is fairness and for the truth to come out," he said.

He was alarmed the night of the crash when Windsor  Locks police let Koistinen go to the hospital unaccompanied after the crash.  Koistinen's father, a Windsor Locks sergeant, was at the scene. Apparently Koistinen was not tested for drunken driving.

"When you're a police officer and your dad's a sergeant, you guys have some kind of connection or people, and you guys know the law, so you guys know how to cut corners," he said. "The lame excuse we got for why there was not a police officer following him to the hospital is because they didn't have enough manpower."

Then, the state's attorney told state police to take over the case, and investigators told Ha Tran they'd keep him up to date on what they found.  For example, they told him the Suffield Tavern had a video of Koistinen drinking before the crash.

"They were nice enough to confirm it with me," he said. "They found out what he was doing, they know who was involved, and so far from what we know those people are being investigated as well.  So far, so good with the investigation."

"From the skid marks, from the witnesses, from the bar tape," he said, "we feel like the driver should be held accountable for this.

State Police Lt.  Paul Vance said the investigation is continuing.  The Hartford Courant reports that Koistinen was drinking at a tailgate party outside the UConn-West Virginia game before that.

Officer Koistinen has not been charged with a crime.

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