Law Enforcement: This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories
In Boston, Texas, a Bowie County jail guard was arrested last Friday after she got caught trying to smuggle marijuana into the jail. Bowie County Correctional Officer Amber Nicole Hinds, 20, went down when jail authorities ordered a search of all employees entering the jail. Hinds moved to the back of the line, and her fellow guards ratted her out. Authorities found marijuana on her person when they searched her. The charges she faces are as yet unspecified.
In Tucson, Arizona, a former South Tucson police lieutenant pleaded guilty Monday to embezzling more than $560,000 from the city and the police department. Richard Robles Garcia admitted taking funds from 2004 to 2008, when he was fired after an audit. He used his position as head of the department's evidence room and asset forfeiture program to turn the funds into his own personal bank, using them to pay off gambling debts, he admitted.
In Benton Harbor, Michigan, a former Benton Harbor narcotics officer pleaded guilty Tuesday to a felony charge of drug trafficking. Andrew Thomas Collins, 26, pleaded guilty to one count of possession with intent to distribute more than five grams of crack cocaine. He faces a minimum of five years in prison and a maximum of 40 years, plus a fine of $2,000. Collins was arrested in February 2008 after being caught in possession of crack cocaine and other drugs. He admitted repeatedly failing to report seized drugs, instead keeping them for himself and falsely reporting he had made controlled drug purchases. Local prosecutors have announced they had to drop a number of drug cases because they were tainted by Collins.
In Yadkinville, North Carolina, a former Yadkin County deputy was sentenced to at least 34 months in prison Monday for embezzling funds from the department, peddling Oxycontin, and falsely telling people he had cancer in a bid to raise funds for his "treatment." Former Deputy Darrell Thornton pleaded guilty to 10 counts of embezzlement, two counts of attempting to traffic in opium and OxyContin, one count of obtaining property by false pretenses and common-law forgery. The pleas were part of a deal with prosecutor Fred Bauer in which eight counts of larceny by an employee were dropped and all the guilty pleas were merged into four charges for sentencing. Thornton stole $4,200 in drug buy money, as well as receiving $1,800 from a fundraiser for his nonexistent cancer and its supposed treatment. His attorney said the one-time narcotics officer had developed an addiction to Oxycontin in the course of treatment for medical problems.
Issue #570, 1/30/09