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Weare sergeant goes on leave from police department

Sgt. Joe Kelley has been on paid leave from the Weare Police Department for the past two weeks, he confirmed yesterday.

Kelley said he has been on medical leave from work since Nov. 3. He cited psychological issues related to an August officer-involved shooting, when a Manchester man was killed in a confrontation with the Weare police during an undercover drug bust.

Weare police Chief John Velleca said he could neither confirm nor deny whether Kelley is on leave because he cannot comment on personnel matters.

“I was experiencing anxiety and really bad things,” Kelley said. “I had to leave work.”

Attorney General Joe Foster is still investigating whether the officers involved were justified in using deadly force against Alex Cora DeJesus, 35. The attorney general’s office has not named those two officers.

Tom Clow, chairman of the Weare Board of Selectmen, said the two officers who were involved in that case have been at work in the station, but they are not on patrol duty.

Clow said he could not comment on why or when Kelley went on leave, but he could confirm Kelley has been placed on paid administrative leave from the department.

Former Weare lieutenant James Carney was placed on administrative leave in March when the department was investigating allegations against him that include threatening members of his staff, transporting alcohol in a town vehicle and having an inappropriate sexual relationship with a town employee.

Carney has sued the town for more information about that investigation, and his lawyer, Tony Soltani, said he tendered his resignation with the department in July.

The Weare Police Department employs 10 sworn officers.

(Megan Doyle can be reached at 369-3321 or mdoyle@cmonitor.com or on Twitter @megan_e_doyle.)

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