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Kirtland Chief of Police terminated for 'habitual drunkenness' and other misconduct

Lance Nosse
Posted at 6:36 PM, Jul 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-08 19:21:15-04

KIRTLAND, Ohio — The City of Kirtland filed a termination letter for Chief of Police Lance Nosse after a nearly three-month investigation unveiled multiple instances of misconduct and what the city called "habitual drunkenness."

In the letter, Mayor Kevin Potter addressed an investigation that found Nosse "guilty in the performance of your official duty of misfeasance, malfeasance, nonfeasance, misconduct in office, gross neglect of duty, and/or habitual drunkenness."

Among the charges against Nosse are consuming alcohol before driving a city-issued motor vehicle on April 13 and 14 and operating the vehicle with an open container.

Nosse is also charged with "unbecoming conduct," stemming from an incident from April 13-14 at a subordinate's home while driving the city-issued vehicle. The letter said evidence shows Nosse making "frequent use of vulgar hand gestures, vulgar language, verbal abuse (yelling, providing mean-spirited comments), sexual comments, gender comments, LGBTQ comments, and racial comments are all unbecoming conduct."

The letter goes on to state Nosse is charged with immoral conduct in regards to the use of his phone and a sergeant's phone. Additionally, Nosse is accused of destroying what may have been a public record, Potter said.

Nosse is accused of neglecting his duty, including the open container and public records charges, and, additionally, accused of leaving Kirtland for "several hours" during the workday for "personal business."

The charges also related to off-duty actions Nosse is accused of, including extensive use of alcohol while off duty that "resulted in impairment, obnoxious or offensive behavior," which discredited the Kirtland Police Department and also left Nosse "unfit" for his next shift.

There are harassment charges against Nosse in the termination letter as well, which states evidence was compiled that Nosse made various statements or comments to subordinates that constitute either sexual, ethnic or racial harassment—and evidence that he "ridiculed, mocked, derided or belittled" his subordinates.

Potter and the City of Kirtland compiled 11 witnesses as well as video, phone records, time sheets, letters and email evidence in the termination case.

Nosse's attorney had sent a letter to the city that Nosse planned to resign and retire effective July 2 but then took back that resignation and retirement on July 2. In turn, the city issued the termination letter to Nosse on Wednesday.

The termination hearing in the case is scheduled for July 12 at Kirtland City Hall.

Read the entire termination letter below:

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