Driver in OUI crash jailed for death of ex-hostage

Driver in OUI crash jailed for death of ex-hostage

David Weber

A Brockton man was sent to jail for 2 1/2 years after a jury convicted him yesterday of being drunk and killing a former Iran hostage in a crash in Stoughton two years ago.

The Norfolk Superior Court jury deliberated about seven hours before convicting Richard Clinch, 24, of killing Malcolm Kalp, 63, a decorated special forces veteran of Vietnam and former CIA operative who was confined and tortured for 444 days during the 1979 Iran hostage crisis.

“Enemies of the United States tried to kill (Kalp) in Southeast Asia, South America and the Middle East,” his friend, Robert Dolan, said in a victim-impact statement. “How sadly ironic that he encountered his killer in his home state on a Sunday morning.”

Kalp, who lived with his wife, Marie, in Weymouth, was on his way to a flea market in Raynham at 5:25 a.m. on April 7, 2002, when his pickup truck was rear-ended and flipped over on Route 24. Kalp died on the highway.

Clinch was on his way home after a night of drinking in Boston. Police estimated the speed of his Audi A4 to be more than 90 mph at the time of impact. His blood-alcohol level was .14 – nearly twice the level of presumed guilt – when tested two hours after the crash.

Before Judge Barbara Dortch-Okara sentenced Clinch, she heard Marie Kalp describe how she was friendly with Kalp as a teenager, but never became close to him until the early 1980s.

“The moment I looked in his eyes, I loved him,” she said about their reunion after more than 20 years. “He was the only man who made me feel loved. He was fun, exciting. Even when he snored on the sofa, he was fun to be with.”

Kalp’s brother, recalling that Clinch tried to hide a case of Corona beer in roadside weeds after the crash, said, “Your honor, my brother would have been the first one out of his car, helping to tip over the truck if someone else were underneath.”

Lisa Kalp, the victim’s daughter, described the love her father showed her two adopted children, one of whom suffered shaken baby syndrome while the other was born with fetal alcohol syndrome.

“He (Clinch) stole my father from me. He stole my children’s grandfather,” she said.

Caption: `I LOVED HIM’: Holding a framed photo of her husband Malcolm, Marie Kalp cries as she speaks about losing him in Dedham Superior Court yesterday. At left, Richard Clinch was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in jail after driving drunk and killing Malcolm Kalp, a former hostage in Iran and veteran of the Vietnam War. Staff photos by Matthew West

Copyright 2004

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