Lack of evidence found in case against Nipper; case closed, Nipper free to rejoin police department
- Published: May 3, 2016
In a letter released today to the News from Special Prosecutor Kevin Talebi of Champaign County, Talebi stated he has concluded his review of charges against a Yellow Springs police officer, and found a lack of evidence to move forward. While Talebi stated he could not cite the name of the accused since he has decided to not file charges, the case is that of longtime Officer Dennis Nipper.
“Upon review of the investigative materials and evidence collected, I have concluded that there is insufficient evidence of any criminal wrongdoing to justify a presentation to a Greene County Grand Jury.” Talebi wrote in a letter to Greene County Prosecutor Stephen Haller, which he released to the News. “I am writing you now to inform you that my investigation into this matter is concluded and that the investigative case will be closed.”
In an email today, Village Manager Patti Bates stated that, “It will be good for the Nippers and the Village to put this behind us and move forward.” Nipper will be released from administrative leave and put back into the police department schedule, she wrote.
A 44-year veteran of the department, Nipper had been placed on unpaid administrative leave on Dec. 22 by Chief Dave Hale, who stated that accusations of misconduct had been made against Nipper. Hale said he was referring the case to the Bureau of Criminal Investigation, or BCI, to ensure fairness, and could not reveal the nature of the charges.The BCI finished its investigation in about a month, after which the investigation was reviewed by Talebi, a special prosecutor brought to the case by the Greene County prosecutor, who cited a potential conflict of interest.
According to the letter from Talebi, Nipper had been accused of sexual assault by an alleged victim, who also accused him of assaulting others. However, “there are serious evidentiary concerns” about the accusation, according to Talebi, including a lack of physical evidence, a long delay in reporting the alleged event and the fact that there were no witnesses. Also, the other women identified by the accuser as victims had denied any sexual misconduct by Nipper.
“There are significant concerns relating to [the accuser’s] credibility,” the prosecutor stated.
See the May 5 Yellow Springs News for a more detailed story.