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This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

A Texas cop's party partners partied too hearty, a Kansas cop is in trouble after the evidence locker gets inspected, and more. Let's get to it:

In Ellinwood, Kansas, a former Ellinwood police officer was arrested last Thursday after drugs and cash went missing from the department evidence locker over the winter. Christopher Rowland, 40, went down after an audit of the evidence locker shortly after he resigned showed that drugs and money had gone missing. He is charged with theft, possession of marijuana, official misconduct, interference with a law enforcement officer and interference with the judicial process.

In McAllen, Texas, a McAllen police officer was arrested last Friday on drug charges after one of his companions called police saying she was receiving "messages from strangers" and saw "the silhouette of two people" outside her home. When police arrived, the caller was determined to have an outstanding drug warrant, and when she asked if she could go back in the house to get some clothing, police accompanying her found two men and illicit drugs in plain view in the house. One of the men was Officer Juan Garza, Jr, 33, who, along with the other two people, was charged with possession and use of a volatile chemical, possession of marijuana, possession of controlled substances, and manufacture or delivery of controlled substances. Garza resigned after his arrest.

In San Antonio, Texas, a Bexar County sheriff's deputy was arrested Sunday after attempting to smuggle marijuana into the county jail. Deputy Kolbe Count Ramirez, 21, went down after an inmate was caught speaking in code on a phone call, leading deputies to uncover an operation to smuggle drugs into the jail. A subsequent search of Ramirez' vehicle in the jail parking lot turned up marijuana and synthetic marijuana. He is charged with criminal conspiracy to commit substances in a correctional facility, possession of a controlled substance, and possession of marijuana.

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

An Oklahoma police chief gets nailed for peddling meth, an Oklahoma prosecutor uses his position to get sexual favors, and more. Let's get to it:

In Tulsa, a former Ottawa County assistant district attorney was arrested April 27 over allegations he traded legal work for sex and drugs. Daniel Thomas Giraldi is accused of obtaining sexual favors in exchange for special treatment of some defendants and of inducing women to travel with him for sex in exchange for money or drugs. Investigators recorded numerous incriminating phone calls and text messages where Giraldi agreed to do legal favors in exchange for sex. When he met with a confidential informant on one of his assignations, he gave her a bag containing several pills that were later found to be controlled substances. He also had condoms with him. He is charged with accepting bribery as a public official, interstate racketeering, possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance and drug trafficking.

In St. Louis, a county jail guard was arrested May 7 for smuggling fentanyl into the facility at least twice last fall, leading to two non-fatal overdoses among inmates. Jailer Joeisha Cofer went down after authorities found text messages between her and an inmate, who was also charged after a search turned up 33 fentanyl pills in his cell. Both Cofer and the inmate are charged with delivery of possession of a controlled substance at a jail. Cofer is now residing at her former place of work after a judge refused to grant her bail.

In Placerville, California, an El Dorado Sheriff's Office correctional officer was arrested May 11 after allegedly showing up for work high. Jailer Anthony Horne, 29, drew the suspicion of coworkers upon arrival at the jail and was then arrested for driving under the influence. When deputies then searched him, they found methamphetamine on his person. In addition to DUI, he is now charged with possession of a controlled substance and bringing a controlled substance to the jail.

In Calvin, Oklahoma, the Calvin police chief was arrested May 13 on charges he was using and selling methamphetamine. Chief Joe Don Chitwood was arrested by Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics agents after a month-long investigation prompted by a tip that he was involved with meth. After Chitwood sold $20 worth of meth to an undercover informant, agents raided his residence and found more meth. He has since resigned as police chief, leaving the town with no police force since he was the sole member of the department.

In Fort Myers, Florida, a guard at the Charlotte Correctional Institution was sentenced Monday to 2 ½ years in federal prison for trying to smuggle drugs into the prison. Guard Leslie Spencer, 49, went down in a sting in which an inmate working as an FBI snitch got him to agree to smuggle three ounces of meth, three ounces of MDMA, and two cellphones into the prison. After making the deal, Spencer met an FBI agent posing as a drug supplier and took possession of the meth, MDMA, cellphones, and payment for the smuggling operation. He pleaded guilty in September 2021 to attempting to possess with the intent to distribute controlled substances.

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

A Big Easy cop does the Big Sleezy and more prison guards go down. Let's get to it:

In Stillwater, Minnesota, a state prison guard was arrested April 17 for smuggling methamphetamine into the prison. Guard Faith Rose Gratz, 24, went down after a cell phone seized from an inmate incriminated her in a smuggling plot. Prison officials searched her vehicle when she arrived at work and found 233 grams of methamphetamine in it. She is charged with one count of methamphetamine possession with intent to sell and one count of possession of 50 grams or more.

In New Orleans, a New Orleans police officer was arrested last Wednesday on accusations he was dealing crack cocaine. Officer Reginald Koeller III, 38, is also on emergency suspensions pending the outcome of an "ongoing federal investigation." He was arrested by FBI agents and New Orleans police after they executed a search warrant and came up with more than an ounce of crack cocaine. He is charged with illegally carrying a weapon while possessing a controlled substance and possession with intent to distribute crack cocaine. He could get up to 20 years under state law.

In Punta Gorda, Florida, a guard at the Charlotte Correctional Institution pleaded guilty last Thursday to smuggling methamphetamine and MDMA into the prison. Troy Alexander Cole, 28, agreed on at least three separate occasions to smuggle drugs into the prison in return for cash payments. He copped to attempted distribution of methamphetamine and MDMA and is now looking at up to 20 years in federal prison.

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

A former NYPD cop goes down hard for big-time dope-slinging, an Ohio jail deputy gets caught holding the baggies, and more. Let's get to it:

In Cincinnati, a Hamilton County jail deputy was arrested last Friday after he got caught bringing 12 one-ounce packages of marijuana into the jail. Jason Robinson, 22, was ratted out by fellow jail deputies. Robinson had just graduated from the jail academy and was the president of his recruit class. He was charged with two felony counts of illegal conveyance.

In La Joya, Texas, a La Joya ISD police officer was arrested last Friday on weapons and drug charges. Officer Jose Luis Ramirez was charged with possession of a controlled substance, unlawfully carrying a weapon, and possession of a drug test falsification device. He was arrested by Texas DPS troopers. No further information is available.

In New York City, a former NYPD officer was sentenced Tuesday to 10 years in federal prison for peddling large quantities of gamma-butyrolactone(GBL) and methamphetamine. John Cicero had pleaded guilty to one count of conspiring to distribute GBL and 50 grams of methamphetamine last October. According to prosecutors Cicero and his co-conspirators stockpiled and sold liters of GBL and kilograms of methamphetamine in apartments, hotel rooms, and storage units in the heart of midtown Manhattan, and a residence in Bronxville, New York. Cicero played a prominent role in the conspiracy, as someone who had direct access to the Mexico-based source of supply and with whom he arranged the receipt of and payment for methamphetamine. He also created and used fake identity documents and stolen credit cards to pay for, among other things, the luxury Manhattan hotel rooms where drugs were trafficked and used.  

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

An Ohio narc gets nailed for peddling fentanyl, two Rikers Island jail guards go down for smuggling dope into the jail, and more. Let's get to it:

In Prince George, Virginia, a Riverside Regional Jail officer was arrested last Wednesday after he got caught bringing drugs into the facility. Officer TiJuan Collins went down after an internal investigation and was found to be carrying illegal drugs and over $600 cash. He is charged with two counts of possession of narcotics with intent to distribute, conspiracy to distribute drugs, attempt to deliver drugs, carrying a concealed weapon, possession of a firearm while possessing drugs, and three counts of unauthorized delivery of articles to a prison.

In New Orleans, an Orleans Parish sheriff's office recruit was arrested Tuesday for allegedly sneaking marijuana into the jail for delivery to an inmate. Derrick Webb, 20, went down after he got caught with weed on him during a search at work. He admitted delivering marijuana for cash on at least two other occasions. He is charged with three counts each of possession with the intent to distribute marijuana, introducing contraband in prison and malfeasance in office.

In New York City, two city jail guards were arrested Tuesday for allegedly smuggling cellphones and drugs such as K2 and marijuana to Bloods gang members on Rikers Island. Krystle Burrell, 35, and Katrina Patterson, 31, were arrested in separate schemes that involved different Rikers jails. Patterson reportedly obtained at least $30,000 from girlfriends of an inmate.

In Columbus, Ohio, a former Columbus police narcotics officer pleaded guilty last Friday to conspiring to distribute fentanyl. John Kotchkoski, 33, and fellow officer Marco Merino had been arrested by federal agents in September 2021 after getting caught up in an FBI sting where they thought they were transporting the drug for traffickers. Prosecutors alleged Kotchkoski made at least half a million dollars in the conspiracy, and as part of his plea agreement, he forfeited cash, firearms, vehicles including a Cadillac Escalade and a Corvette and a $500,000 money judgment against him. 

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

We've got a real rogue's gallery of crooked cops this week, with a California cop wrecking his car while on meth and fentanyl, a Philadelphia cop extorting sex and selling heroin, and more. Let's get to it:

In Gaffney, South Carolina, a Gaffney police officer was arrested last Wednesday for altering a drug test for a firefighter and unlawfully confiscating marijuana. Charlena Marie Camden Hamrick, 31, went down after the county sheriff sought an investigation into social media posts detailing how she provided a clean urine sample to defeat a firefighter's drug test. The investigation also revealed that she had seized marijuana without turning it in, instead consuming it with her boyfriend. She is charged with misconduct in office and substitution or spiking to defeat a drug test. She is now a former Gaffney police officer.

In Fresno, California, a Fresno police sergeant was arrested last Thursday for stealing drugs, using them, and then crashing his patrol car while driving intoxicated on duty. Sergeant Donnie Dinnell, a 19-year veteran, went down after a 911 caller reported a police car driving erratically in a parking lot. The police car was running over curbs and struck a tree, disabling it. Responding police first thought Dinnell had suffered a medical emergency but then realized his last call before that involved drugs. They also found a bindle containing meth and fentanyl in the patrol car. Dinnell admitted taking the drugs from a woman and letting her go and told investigators he planned to get rid of the drugs but was drifting in and out of consciousness before crashing. He is charged with robbery, possession of meth, and driving under the influence.

In Hanover, Virginia, a Pamunkey Regional Jail guard was arrested on Monday along with eight other people for allegedly bringing drug into the jail. Former Corrections Officer Jaden Robertson, 23, and the others, including several inmates, are facing unspecified drug distribution charges.

In Freehold, New Jersey, a former Long Branch police officer was sentenced last Friday to 10 years in state prison for operating a meth lab in his home. Christopher Walls, 50, had pleaded guilty last November to manufacturing a controlled dangerous substance and to causing a risk of widespread injury. He went down after police responded to a domestic disturbance call and his wife told officers about the basement lab. Police searchers then found the lab, as well as an open, unsecured gun safe with two long guns, four handguns, eight high-capacity magazines and ammunition inside.

In Philadelphia, a former Carlisle police officer and member of the Cumberland County Drug Task Force was sentenced last Friday to 75 months in prison for extorting sexual favors from women in return for not aiding in their prosecution—oh, and distributing heroin. In one case, Christopher Collare, 54, agreed not to appear at an evidentiary hearing in exchange for sex; in another, he took steps to held reduce a potential sentence in return for sexual favors. He also went down for lying to FBI agents about his behavior when he was being interviewed to be an FBI task force member. He pleaded guilty to bribery, drug distribution and making false statements.

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

A Raleigh cop gets caught slinging cocaine from his patrol car, a small-town North Carolina former police chief just got himself in even bigger trouble, and more. Let's get to it:

In Chadbourn, North Carolina, the former Chadbourn police chief was arrested last Thursday after faking his own death to try to avoid prosecution on more than 80 felony charges. Ex-Chief Anthony Spivey, 36, had been due in court last Monday but skipped out and staged his own suicide, only to be caught hiding at his aunt's apartment. He had been chief in the small town until April, when he was slapped with dozens of charges and accused of regularly raiding the police department's evidence locker, destroying evidence, trafficking opium and selling seized weapons to friends and family. He now also has 40 outstanding warrants for failure to appear on those charges. He went down because the State Bureau of Investigation grew curious about why confiscated drugs were not being sent to the state crime lab.

In Washington, DC, a DC correctional officer was arrested last Thursday for allegedly smuggling drugs, knives, and other contraband into the jail in return for cash bribes. Guard Johnson Ayuk, 31, went down after an internal investigation at the jail found that he had been accepting payments from a detainee's girlfriend to bring contraband into the jail. He did so by hiding it beneath compression shorts. He is charged with bribery and providing or possessing contraband in prison.

In Raleigh, North Carolina, a Raleigh police officer was arrested last Thursday for selling cocaine from his patrol car while on duty. Officer Keven Rodriguez, 33, went down after the police department and the DEA developed information that he was distributing controlled substances in the area. Authorities did a controlled buy, with an informant giving Rodriguez $2,600 in cash and Rodriguez then sold him two ounces of cocaine. He now faces one count of distribution of a quantity of cocaine and one count of possession of a firearm in furtherance of, and using and carrying a firearm during, a drug trafficking crime. He's looking at a mandatory minimum of five years in federal prison and up to life.

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

This week, we have a trio of jail guards gone bad. Let's get to it:

In Cheshire, Connecticut, a former state prison correctional officer was arrested last Thursday for allegedly selling marijuana to inmates and receiving payments through a Cash App account. The unnamed guard went down after an inmate was found with drugs in January 2021 and an investigation ensued. He is charged with conveying an unauthorized item into a correctional institution. He was released on a $10,000 bond and is scheduled to be arraigned on March 17.

In Dresden, Tennessee, a Weakley County corrections officer was arrested last Friday for allegedly trying to bring unspecified Schedule III drugs to inmates. Guard Robert Quimen, 23, went down after an internal investigation at the jail. Authorities said he brought the substance to the jail with the intent of delivering it to inmates. He is charged with manufacturing/selling/delivering controlled substances (Schedule III) and introduction of drugs or intoxicants into a penal facility.

In Newark, New Jersey, a former federal prison corrections officer was sentenced last Thursday to more than two years in prison for taking bribes to bring drugs in to inmates. Paul Anton Wright, 36, will also have to forfeit the $50,000 he received in bribes as part of the 26-month sentence imposed on Thursday. He had pleaded guilty to a bribery charge in November 2019. He admitted to smuggling in tobacco, synthetic marijuana, and suboxone to the Fort Dix federal prison.

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

A Florida deputy goes down for trying to set up an innocent man, an Ohio narc gets ready to head for prison after getting caught in an FBI sting, and more. Let's get to it:

In Fort Myers, Florida, a Lee County sheriff's deputy was arrested last Friday for conspiring to frame an innocent man on drug charges in return for sexual favors and a trip to Paris. Now former Deputy Niko Irizarry allegedly assisted another man with a grievance against the victim by performing a traffic stop and arresting the man after his coconspirators had planted drugs in his vehicle. He is charged with falsifying an official document.

In Montgomery, Alabama, a Wetumpka police officer was arrested last Friday after police responded to a domestic disturbance call. Officer Jeffrey Hall, 45, is charged with manufacturing a controlled substance and third-degree domestic violence. His wife also faces third-degree domestic violence charges. No further information is available.

In Columbus, Ohio, a former Columbus narcotics officer pleaded guilty last Wednesday to distributing fentanyl and taking bribes to protect cocaine shipments. Marco Merino, 45, was arrested by the FBI in September and accused of distributing approximately 7 1/2 kilograms of fentanyl. He pleaded guilty to drug distribution and to a bribery charge for accepting $45,000 to protect the transit of at least 47 kilograms of cocaine, which was not actually cocaine, but a powder in an FBI sting. Merino is now looking at up to 20 years in federal prison when sentenced. A second officer charged in the case still has a case pending.

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

A small-town Georgia cops gets caught slinging weed from his patrol car, a corrupt killer Puerto Rican cop heads for decades in prison, and more. Let's get to it:

In Warwick, Georgia, a Warwick police officer was arrested last Thursday for selling marijuana while on duty and in uniform. Officer Leon Mitchell, 32, went down after investigators with Southwestern Regional Drug Enforcement Office (SWRDEO) that he was slinging weed, and undercover agents began buying marijuana from him. After he was arrested, marijuana, scales, and plastic baggies were found in his police cruiser. He's facing two counts of sale/distribution of marijuana, one count of possession with intent to distribute marijuana, four counts of possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, three counts of violation of oath of office, and last but not least, two counts of use of a communication device during the commission of a felony.

In Kokomo, Indiana, a Howard County corrections officer was arrested Tuesday after she was caught smuggling drugs into the county jail. Guard Emily Harvey, 32, went down after detectives received a tip that a guard was bringing in drugs and they then watched her enter a unit to which she was not assigned and meet with an inmate. A search of the inmate's cell yielded a vape pen, and a search of Harvey's vehicle in the parking lot turned up six grams of suboxone and "additional contraband." She is charged with dealing in a schedule I, II or III substance; two counts of trafficking with an inmate; official misconduct; and possession of a controlled substance.

In New York City, a former Puerto Rico Police Department officer was sentenced last Thursday to 30 years in federal prison for agreeing to help a drug trafficking organization that shipped drugs from Puerto Rico to New York City, where they were distributed from a Bronx daycare. William Vazquez-Baez had pleaded guilty earlier to one count of participating in a racketeering conspiracy and one count of participating in a conspiracy to commit murder for hire. Prosecutors alleged that Vazquez-Baez conspired with the La ONU group, which sold thousands of pounds of cocaine and used violent methods to protect its operation. Vazquesz-Baez was on salary with the gang and provided it with intelligence obtained from the police narcotics unit and helped protect its shipments while in transit. Vazquez-Baez also informed gang members that a local resident, Freddy Mendez-Rivera, was complaining to police about drug dealing in his are, which led to his kidnapping and murder. And he was involved in two other murders for the gang.

In Warwick, Georgia, a Warwick police officer was arrested last Thursday for selling marijuana while on duty and in uniform. Officer Leon Mitchell, 32, went down after investigators with Southwestern Regional Drug Enforcement Office (SWRDEO) that he was slinging weed, and undercover agents began buying marijuana from him. After he was arrested, marijuana, scales, and plastic baggies were found in his police cruiser. He's facing two counts of sale/distribution of marijuana, one count of possession with intent to distribute marijuana, four counts of possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, three counts of violation of oath of office, and last but not least, two counts of use of a communication device during the commission of a felony.

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