Rehoboth officer involved in April 4 accident

April 1, 2013

For the Rehoboth Beach Police Department, April cannot be over soon enough.

Earlier this month, a Rehoboth police officer was accused of using excessive force, and now comes the news that just before that incident, April 4, one of the city’s new police cruisers was damaged in an accident.

Detective William Sullivan was on his way to work, driving northbound on Beaver Dam Road in his 2013 Ford Taurus police cruiser when he struck a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt driven by Anna Kemp, 64, of Lewes. According to Delaware State Police, Sullivan failed to stop as Kemp turned left onto Otter Pond Road, a private drive between Fisher Road and Kendale Road.

Kemp’s Cobalt was pushed forward into a ditch and came to a stop in the northbound lane of Beaver Dam Road. Both drivers were wearing seat belts and were taken to Beebe Medical Center with nonlife-threatening injuries and released.

Chief Keith Banks said reports indicate Sullivan was at fault for the accident. He said it appears the city’s insurance will pay for fixing the police car, which was damaged but not totaled.

Along with Banks, Sullivan is the only other member of the department allowed to have his own vehicle because he is on call 24 hours a day. City Manager Greg Ferrese said no disciplinary action would be taken.

Sullivan’s accident came three days before an April 7 tasering incident in downtown Rehoboth, in which an officer tasered a man; the incident was recorded by his wife and posted to YouTube. The department initiated an investigation into the incident, conducted by Dover Police Department, to review Cpl. Robert Tyler Whitman’s use of force against Jeremy Anderson, 37, of Mechanicsburg, Pa. Anderson alleged that Whitman also kicked him in the head during his arrest.

Whitman was given administrative leave until the investigation is complete, while Cpl. Curtis Sauve and Lt. Victor Letonoff, who were also on the scene during the incident, remain on duty. Banks said the investigation is still ongoing.


Melissa Steele contributed to this story

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