Ex-Troy police officer indicted on assault, civil rights charges

A former Troy police officer fired by the city in June for excessive use of force and other policy violations has been indicted by a Miami County grand jury on misdemeanor charges of assault and interfering with civil rights.

Eric Kilbourne, 47, of Troy pleaded not guilty to both charges during arraignment Sept. 1 in county Municipal Court. Another court date was not set pending the appointment by the Ohio Supreme Court of a visiting judge to handle the case.

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A request for a jury trial was filed by Kilbourne’s attorney, Wm. Stewart Mathews II of Cincinnati.

Kilbourne is accused of knowingly causing or attempting to cause physical harm April 25 to a 37-year-old Bellefontaine man during an arrest for a domestic incident at a Troy motel. He also is accused of while acting as a public servant depriving or attempting to deprive a person of his constitutional or statutory right.

Kilbourne was released on his own recognizance following arraignment.

The county grand jury handed up the indictments in August following an investigation into the April 25 incident by Piqua police, at the request of Troy Police Chief Shawn McKinney. A special prosecutor, James Miller of Buckley King in Dayton, was appointed to handle the review of the investigation and present information to a grand jury.

Officer Kilbourne, a 17-year veteran on the Troy Police Department, was fired in early June by Patrick Titterington, city service and safety director. Kilbourne was fired for a series of alleged city and police department policy violations including use of excessive force, conduct unbecoming, malfeasance in office and not submitting truthful and complete reports.

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The incident in the early hours of April 25 involved the arrest of a 37-year-old Bellefontaine man following a domestic related incident at the Hampton Inn and the handling of the suspect at the police department’s sally port, according to an investigation report.

Misdemeanor charges of domestic violence and violating a protection order are pending in Miami County Municipal Court against the man.

Kilbourne’s treatment of the suspect was “clearly punitive for (the suspect’s) ongoing verbal assaults and challenging,” a report stated.

As the men arrived at the police department, the suspect and Kilbourne were engaging in a verbal exchange. That back and forth included cursing, and, at one point, the suspect tells the officer he was “like other cops who kneel on people until they die,” Capt. Jeff Kunkleman wrote in an internal investigation.

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Kilbourne was accused of holding the suspect in a headlock, taking him to the ground, pushing his face to the floor and placing his knee on the man’s arm, the report said. As the knee was on the arm, the suspect was “yelling in pain,” the report said.

Kilbourne was accused of making a crying noise, and saying to the suspect, “Now you know how your old lady felt, right, when you were beating on her.”

In the Piqua police investigation report, Lt. Dave Thomas wrote that Kilbourne told him, “My intentions were not to have him get injured or injure him in any way. My intentions were to keep control of him.”

Two other officers in the sally port that night were disciplined by McKinney for failing to intervene and failing to properly report the use of force, both violations of Troy Police policy. One also was found to engage in conduct unbecoming a police officer.

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