Commonwealth Journal

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June 27, 2013

Claims of excessive force have haunted Molen

(Continued)

Somerset —

Whitaker was charged with speeding, fleeing or evading police, menacing and resisting arrest in connection with that incident. 
Although the lawsuit was eventually dismissed in federal court — and the details of that dismissal were never made public — Attorney Scott Foster, who represented Whitaker at one time in local court, requested a hearing in January 2011 during which 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 —  Billy Bolin, Joe Criswell and Eric Klepper — who allegedly witnessed Molen’s assault on others. A recording was even played during the hearing that allegedly showed Molen striking a victim who had already been placed on the ground during an arrest. 
Former Burnside mayor Chuck Fourman also testified in the hearing and was asked to recall his arrest in Aug. 2008 after he led city and county police on a high-speed chase that began in the city limits and ended in Russell County. 
Fourman stated it was after the chase ended and he was arrested when someone approached him and kicked him in the groin while he was in a prone position on the ground. Although Fourman stated he didn’t know which officer struck him, Bolin testified he saw Molen strike Fourman.
Numerous other witnesses testified during the hearing who alleged brutality on the part of Molen, but several of them, during cross-examinations, stated they had been drinking when the incidents occurred. 
Molen was the target of another lawsuit, filed in 2011, that was eventually dismissed as well. 
Kevin McCoy filed a lawsuit alleging that on Aug. 14, 2011, Molen rammed McCoy, who was operating a motorcycle on Ky. 70, with his cruiser.
“Molen utilized excessive force and performed an unnecessary, totally improper and potentially life-threatening ‘pit maneuver’ on McCoy, who was on his motorcycle,” the lawsuit read.

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