A former senior Oklahoma law enforcement official faces a felony count of embezzlement in connection with four stolen firearms. The 46-year-old Lawton resident was serving as the Medicine Park Police Department’s assistant chief when he was taken into custody on Oct. 13. He was released after posting a bond in the amount of $1,000 following an arraignment hearing held in the Comanche County District Court. He is scheduled to appear in court again for a conference and preliminary hearing on Jan. 4, 2021.
Stolen guns pawned
The man is accused of taking four guns from the MPPD’s arms room between March 2016 and November 2016 and then selling them. When the rifle, two handguns and shotgun were reported stolen, investigators tracked them down to two local pawn shops.
Man allegedly confesses to taking guns
An Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation agent who interviewed the man claims that he confessed. He is said to have told the agent that he took the guns because he needed money. According to a probable cause affidavit, the pawn shops paid a total of $825 for the four firearms. If he is convicted, the man could be sent to a state prison for up to two years and be ordered to pay a fine of up to $5,000.
Having a lawyer present during questioning
The facts of this case suggest that even senior police officers sometimes confess to serious crimes without some sort of a sentencing deal on the table. Experienced criminal defense attorneys may urge their clients to answer no questions and make no statements until they have consulted with a lawyer. When a suspect wishes to confess because the evidence against them is overwhelming, an attorney could advise them to remain silent until an agreement has been reached with the prosecutor involved.