Commonwealth Journal

News Live

August 15, 2013

Molen Trial Continued

Sheriff's deputy accused of using excessive force goes to trial in December

(Continued)

Somerset —

Molen’s defense team has also asked that video files in DVD format, produced by prosecutors, be sealed. U.S. Attorney Kerry B. Harvey on Monday filed a notice stating the U.S. would be entering a video depicting a Sept. 3, 2006 incident and a video of a July 1, 2007 incident at the sheriff’s office in Somerset as exhibits in the trial. 
Ingram, in his response to the defense attorneys’ request, said the motion would be taken under advisement. 
A pretrial conference in the case, originally scheduled for Aug. 23, has been continued to Nov. 22. A motions hearing is set for Oct. 15. 
Whitaker, one of the alleged victims, filed a civil lawsuit against Molen in 2010 stemming from the Oct. 2009 incident mentioned in the federal indictment. The lawsuit was filed in early October 2010 and was resolved and dismissed in federal court in February 2011. Whitaker’s suit claimed that Molen had beaten Whitaker after he attempted to carry out a traffic stop on the towing service business owner. 
Molen had contended, through the arrest citation detailing the incident, that Whitaker had acted aggressively toward the deputy after he came to a stop — and after Molen allegedly “clocked” Whitaker driving around 70 mph in a 55 mph speed zone and witnessed him running a stop sign. Molen also claimed in the citation that he was forced to subdue Whitaker, and that the other man was fighting back.
It was during a 2011 hearing, requested by Whitaker’s attorney at that time, Scott Foster, that a number of witnesses testified that Molen had allegedly assaulted them in the past. 
Eleven witnesses took the stand during that hearing, including three Somerset Police officers who allegedly witnessed Molen’s assault on others. A video recording was played during the hearing that allegedly showed Molen striking a victim who had already been placed on the ground during an arrest. 

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