Clayton Police chief in court Wednesday to face DUI charge

DOVER — The town of Clayton’s police chief is scheduled to appear in court Wednesday morning regarding an arrest for alleged drunken last summer near Smyrna.

Brian C. Hill, who pleaded not guilty to a driving under the influence of alcohol charge after a traffic stop on Aug. 12, was placed on administrative leave with pay after a unanimous town council vote during a special meeting on Aug. 29. The police chief is paid $80,828.80 annually, according to town records.

The misdemeanor case in the Kent County Court of Common pleas is set for 9 a.m.

Brian C. Hill

Chief Hill, a 47-year-old Dover resident, was stopped by a Delaware State Police trooper on Sunnyside Road just after 10 p.m. on a Saturday night, authorities confirmed. He was also cited for failure to remain in a single lane.

Chief Hill declined earlier requests for comment. Lt. Carl Hutson was named acting chief in his absence following the special council meeting in August.

The citation was initially sent to New Castle County Court of Common Pleas for an initial appearance, but moved to Kent County due to an errant location listed on the ticket by a trooper.

An alleged blood alcohol concentration of 0.016 was first listed in papers by police, then amended to 0.16 by authorities who declined further comment when questioned by the Delaware State News.

The minimum threshold for drunken driving in Delaware is 0.08.

While the stop was made on Aug. 12, Mayor David Letterman did not learn of the alleged incident until the night of Aug. 16 after media questioned him earlier in the day.

The mayor would not say whether he first contacted Chief Hill or vice versa regarding the stop.

When asked by a reporter on Aug. 16, State Police confirmed charges against a Brian C. Hill, 47, of Dover, but cited policy and would not disclose his employer.

Mayor Letterman said Chief Hill’s employment status will be determined upon completion of the case against him. The chief has worked for the Town of Clayton for approximately 10 years.

After the special town council meeting, Mayor Letterman described the official action at the time as “a balancing act” for the town to “look out for its citizens” and also the chief’s “right to due process.”

The mayor said Chief Hill served as an excellent law enforcement officer during his tenure.

“In the years he’s been here he’s done an exemplary job,” Mayor Letterman said.

“… He has done a great job up to this point. Everyone makes mistakes.”

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