Milford police officer charged in fatal Hamden pedestrian accident

A 28-year-old Milford police officer has been charged in a crash that left a pedestrian dead in Hamden last summer.

Hamden police charged Courtney Bothwell, of North Haven, with negligent homicide with a motor vehicle, failure to exercise due care to avoid colliding with a pedestrian and distracted driving. Police indicated in the charges that the distracted driving charge was not related to cell phone usage.

Bothwell is listed as a patrol officer first class on the Milford Police Department’s staff roster. A website for CrossFit HCC indicated she is also a Level 1 CrossFit certified trainer.

Bothwell is still employed as a Milford police officer: Her work status had not changed, but there will be an administrative investigation to see if any Milford Police Department policies were violated, according to Milford Police Department Spokesman Michael DeVito.

DeVito released the following statement from the Milford Police Department:

“In July, Officer Bothwell, who is a Milford police officer, was involved in a motor vehicle accident in Hamden while off duty. Details of this accident investigation will come from the Hamden Police Department Traffic Division.

“When any Milford police officer is involved in an off-duty incident an administrative investigation is launched to determine if any of our department policies were violated,” DeVito said.

Hamden Police found that the crash, on July 20, 2017, happened as 50-year-old Kristin Wilcyznski, of North Haven, was crossing Dixwell Avenue and Bothwell was driving south, merging onto Old Dixwell Avenue, according to Hamden Police Capt. Ronald Smith.

Wilcyznski was hit by a vehicle being driven by Bothwell. Wilcyznski was taken to Yale New Haven Hospital, where she died shortly after.

Hamden Police Officer Kevin Hall conducted an extensive investigation, Smith said, which led to an arrest warrant application for Bothwell. The court approved the warrant and she was arrested and charged Wednesday.

Bothwell was released on a written promise to appear at State Superior Court in Meriden on Jan. 14.

After the accident, community members came together to raise money for the Wilczynski family. More than $20,000 was raised through a crowdfunding campaign. Wilczynski was married and had three children.

Staff writers Tara O’Neill and Jill Dion contributed to this report.