CONWAY — The Grafton County Attorney's Office has filed two criminal complaints of "false personation" against disgraced former Bartlett Police Chief Tim Connifey following his arrest by Alexandria police last month.
Alexandria is a town about 20 miles west of Meredith.
According to the Alexandria Police Department Facebook page, “On March 11, Alexandria PD arrested Timothy Connifey on two charges of impersonating an officer. Earlier this year during two separate traffic stops, Connifey produced a police ID. Connifey was a former chief of police in Bartlett, N.H. Connifey pleaded guilty to felony-level charges in 2016 and was subsequently decertified as a police officer.”
In a phone interview, Alexandria Police Chief David Suckling described the ID Connifey had produced as a card, not a badge.
On Tuesday, the probable cause statement and criminal complaints became publicly available, providing more context to the case.
According to his statement, on Feb. 17 at about 7 a.m., Suckling was driving east on the Ragged Mountain Highway toward Bristol. That's when he saw a Subaru Forester traveling westbound with its windshield "completely covered in ice and snow and the windshield wipers were in the forward position away from the glass."
Suckling said he stopped the vehicle near Pattee Hill Road.
He said the driver (Connifey) motioned to him that the driver's side window was frozen shut, and Suckling gave him permission to open the door.
Suckling asked Connifey about the snow and ice covering his car.
"He really didn't say much about it, he just kind of sat there smiling, but he did say that he was on his way to work. He told me that he worked in lift operations at (Ragged) Mountain."
Connifey then produced a Massachusetts driver's license and registration. He also removed from his wallet a police identification card. The card was "sitting there in plain view," facing Suckling, the Alexandria chief said.
"I believe that he was showing me the ID in the hope I would give him some kind of professional courtesy and not write him a ticket," said Suckling.
"I asked him which agency he was from, and he told me Bartlett."
Suckling went back to the cruiser and ran Connifey's details. He also called Sgt. Spencer Marvin of Danbury police and told him about the stop, and Marvin told him that Connifey was a felon.
Suckling said the registration on the vehicle came back "canceled" and told Connifey the car would need to be towed. He also asked Connifey about the ID and said Connifey told him that he was retired.
He noted in his affidavit there was nothing on the ID that indicated Connifey was retired.
According to Suckling, Connifey called him twice on the morning of Feb. 19. The first time Connifey asked about how to get his car back. Suckling said while he had Connifey on the phone, he asked about the ID but Connifey "deflected" his question.
During the second call, Suckling said he asked Connifey about the ID.
"Connifey went on to say, 'You know what happens if I get arrested?' He said that he 'would lose his job, and his family,'" Suckling said. "He said that 'no matter the outcome it was going to cost him thousands in lawyer fees.' Connifey told me his background in law enforcement and how he worked for 29 years. He said that it was 'a bad end to a good career.'
"There was no doubt that Connifey was trying to influence me in making a decision not to write a warrant for him."
Suckling added that he had pulled over Connifey on Jan. 28 and Connifey pulled out the ID card on that occasion as well.
On Tuesday, Assistant Grafton County Attorney Antonia Barry filed two "false personation" complaints against Connifey keyed to the dates Jan. 28 and Feb. 17. The verbiage is the same on both the complaints, which say:
"1. Timothy J. Connifey knowingly 2. Displayed without authority any uniform, badge, or other identification by which a state police officer, police officer of any city or town, or any other law enforcement officer or investigator employed by any state, country or political subdivision of a state or country, is lawfully identified, and with the intent to be recognized as such, 3. When he displayed to Chief Suckling of the Alexandria Police Department a Bartlett Police Identification Card bearing his photo and identifying the holder as Chief Timothy Connifey during a motor vehicle stop, even though he was not employed by the Police Department or authorized to use the identification."
Connifey is set to be arraigned in Grafton Superior Court at 9 a.m. on April 28.
Online judicial branch information shows that attorney Eric Wilson of Wilson Bush & Keefe of Nashua is representing Connifey, 59.
Twenty years ago, when he was Newfields' police chief, Connifey was hired by Bartlett to be their new chief in December 2001. He took over a post vacated by Bob Snow, who resigned suddenly in August 2000.
In September 2016, Connifey was sentenced to spend 90 days in jail after pleading guilty to felony perjury for lying to a grand jury about having a sexual relationship with a female defendant.
The sentence was the result of a plea deal that Carroll County Superior Court Judge Amy Ignatius approved despite reservations that it was too light.
He also pleaded guilty to misdemeanor official oppression for failing to recuse himself from prosecuting his lover. For the misdemeanor charge, Connifey received a 12-month jail sentence that was suspended for three years.
At the time of his 2016 sentencing, Connifey apologized to the town of Bartlett, local officers and the court. “I will carry this stain forever and the shame that goes along with it,” he said. “My family and others around me suffer as a result of my actions.”