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Robles Subject Of Police Probe; Focus Of Inquiry Not Criminal

Jenna Carlesso

July 16, 2010

Hector Robles, the Democratic legislator representing the 6th House District and a city police officer, is the subject of an internal police investigation, department officials confirmed Thursday.

Sgt. Christene Mertes, a department spokeswoman, declined to discuss the scope of the investigation, but stressed that it is "administrative in nature" and does not involve criminal allegations. The investigation is ongoing, she said, and details will be released once it's completed.

Robles, who works the overnight shift at the police department, said Thursday that the internal investigation began in September and that he has not been placed on administrative leave. He declined to discuss specifics of the probe.

"It's an administrative issue. I'm sure the chief will handle the situation properly," he said.

Robles' challenger in the upcoming primary, Alyssa Peterson, told an audience about the investigation during a candidate forum Tuesday at the Hartford Public Library. She also pointed out that Robles had several complaints filed against him in his capacity as a police officer over a 10-year span. All of those complaints have been dismissed.

"I've been cleared of all those allegations, which have been open public documents for years," Robles said earlier this week. "It's not as if I was hiding anything."

Robles was unanimously endorsed by the Democrats at their party convention in May. Janet Appellof, a spokeswoman for the Democratic Town Committee's 6th District in south Hartford, said Thursday that the district's 13 members plan to meet Saturday to discuss the Robles matter. She said Robles is planning to attend to answer questions.

Appellof said she learned of the internal investigation this week, and that the news surprised her.

"People have questions for Hector, and I imagine he'll answer them," she said.

Reprinted with permission of the Hartford Courant. To view other stories on this topic, search the Hartford Courant Archives at http://www.courant.com/archives.
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