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Charges dropped against Hardin police officer

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Posted at 8:34 AM, Aug 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-22 10:34:37-04

A district court judge has dismissed all charges against a Hardin police officer related to an incident with a suspect in March.

Police Chief Donald Babbin said in a Friday news release that Judge Dan Wilson tossed out two misdemeanor charges with prejudice against Officer Calen Curtin on Thursday, Aug. 18.

On March 6, a special prosecutor brought in by Big Horn County alleged that Curtin punched a man twice in the head with a closed fist at the Town Pump in Hardin. The man had been smoking inside and was asked to leave, according to court documents.

Babbin said in the news release that the action came after the suspect first taunted the officer by saying "you're going to have to take me down." He then struck Curtin in the head and refused to comply with commands, according to Babbin.

Babbin himself also faced charges related to the incident. Prosecutors alleged that he threatened the suspect the next day when he filed the complaint, but those charges were dismissed in May.