Windsor Locks Approves $460K Settlement for Police Sergeant

Windsor Locks residents voted Tuesday night to pay $460,000 to a police sergeant acquitted of hindering the investigation into a deadly crash that sent his son to prison.

Townspeople voted 387 to 178 in favor of the settlement for Robert Koistinen, according to First Selectman Steven Wawruck Jr.

Windsor Locks took up the agreement at a public hearing and town meeting after the town board of finance struck a deal with the sergeant. After the board of finance and board of selectmen signed off on the agreement, town officials put it a referendum.

The Board of Selectmen says the people of Windsor Locks will make the decision on the Koistinen settlement in a referendum on March 17th.

Koistinen was fired from the police department in January 2012 and charged with hindering the investigation into the deadly October 2010 crash that sent his son, Michael Koistinen, to prison.

Michael Koistinen was off-duty and had been drinking that night when he struck and killed Henry Dang, a 15-year-old boy who was riding a bicycle, according to police. He's now serving a five-year sentence.

Robert Koistinen was found not guilty in October 2012, and then case went to the state Labor Board, which decided Koistinen should get his job back.

“This settlement has been years in the making and is the result of many hours of negotiation. The Police Commission unsuccessfully litigated the termination of Robert Koistinen before the State Labor Board and the state had also unsuccessfully tried Robert Koistinen for hindering prosecution and interfering with police,” the police commission said in a statement.

The settlement includes giving Robert Koistinen $265,000 in back pay from January 2013 to April 1, 2015, and $195,000 to waive all claims, past and future, including in accrued vacation time and sick time.

Koistinen will resign from the police department.

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