A Kennett Square officer - applauded two years ago for his volunteer work on a kidnapping case - was suspended after his Thursday arrest on hundreds of sex-offense counts, including rape and statutory rape.
Jose Manuel Santiago, 54, was arrested at his home in Newark, Del., and was in the New Castle County prison, Kennett Square Mayor Matthew Fetick said Thursday night. There could be an extradition hearing Friday, Fetick said.
"We have no information that any of the alleged crimes were committed while he was on duty or in Kennett Square," said Fetick, though he hastened to add that he had been given only a brief description of the charges.
Santiago, who was hired in 1998, has been on disability since December 2008 for a nonwork injury and has not performed his duties as an officer since then, a Kennett Square Borough news release said.
The Chester County District Attorney's Office filed the charges, according to the borough statement. District Attorney Joseph W. Carroll could not be reached for comment.
Online court records list more than 100 counts each of rape, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, and endangering the welfare of children. Santiago is also charged with multiple counts of statutory rape, aggravated indecent assault, statutory sexual assault and incest.
"I am discouraged and disappointed to hear of these serious allegations," Fetick said in the statement. "I will update the community as more information is known and as permitted without violating the rules of disclosure regarding personnel issues."
In the minutes from the Borough Council meeting on March 17, 2008, the patrol officer was commended for assisting the FBI and Wilmington police with a kidnapping case on his own time.