Articles Posted in Theft

Florida Woman Jailed after Turning in her Husband’s Firearms to Police

Courtney Irby has been arrested for armed burglary for acts committed while trying to protect herself from domestic violence in Polk County Florida.  News4Jax covered the recent story regarding Irby who is currently charged with Armed Burglary, a felony punishable by life under Florida Law.  The arrest has caught the attention of law makers as well as both sides of the “gun control” debate.

The MSN news article lays out the facts as police reported what happened in these two cases.  Irby and her estranged husband are going through a divorce.  Her husband, Joseph Irby, was recently arrested for Aggravated Battery- Domestic when he allegedly rammed Courtney Irby’s motor vehicle with his own motor vehicle.  He was arrested on June 14, 2019.  The incident began in the courthouse parking lot and continued to the roadways were the husband continued to attempt to run the victim off the road.  A review of the police report on the husband shows that the victim was speaking with 911 during the incident, so this 911 call’s recording will certainly be used as evidence.  When the police spoke with the victim the report states that the victim was uncontrollably crying and stated numerous times “She was in fear for her life.”

A further review of the court records show when the husband went through first appearance court (Bond Hearing), the Judge set a $10,003.00 bond with Pretrial Services.  Pretrial Services is a program that acts similar to probation while an individual is out on bond.  A defendant may be required to wear a GPS monitor, SCRAM monitor (anti alcohol leg monitor), weekly drug testing, weekly visits with a case manager,  ordered to have no contact with the victim,  ordered not to travel or leave the county of arrest, and various other conditions.  In the instant case the husband is required to call into Pretrial Services every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday as well as to check in with Pretrial Services after each and every court date.  The husband was also ordered to have no contact with the victim, and to follow the conditions ordered in an injunction between the husband and the wife.  The husband is also prohibited from leaving the State of Florida without permission from the Judge.  Should the husband violate any of his court ordered conditions of pretrial release, he is subject to his bond be revoked and set at zero and he will wait in jail until his case or the resulting sentence is over.

The husband bonded out of the Polk County Jail on June 19, 2019 and his attorney has already filed a motion to request his Pretrial Services order modified so that the husband may travel out of the State of Florida for work purposes.

After the husband was arrested, the wife filed with the Court system a Domestic Violence Injunction for Protection from her husband.  A temporary injunction was granted by the Court and hearing date was set for June 28, 2019.   A temporary injunction acts very similar to a regular injunction, and is often granted by a Judge to keep individuals safe until a hearing can be conducted with live testimony in which the Judge will then make a decision to grant a permanent injunction.  An injunction has two parties. A petitioner is the person seeking the injunction.  A respondent is the person the injunction would placed on.  When deciding to grant or deny a temporary injunction, all the Judge has to review is the sworn affidavit or the words written down by the petitioner.  If a temporary injunction is granted, the respondent must forfeit all of his/her firearms and have no contact with the petitioner. The injunction is not a criminal matter. It is handled in a civil court division normally referred to as Domestic Violence Court.

After the temporary injunction was granted against the husband is where the wife has found her own self fighting a criminal case of her own.  On June 15 the wife entered the Lakeland Police Department to surrender the firearms owned by her husband.  Her rationale was that the husband would not surrender the firearms on his own, so in fear of her own life, she went to his home, went through a locked front door, took the guns, and brought them to the Police Station.  During this time, the Police Officer asked the wife if she had permission to be in the husband’s home, which the wife admitted she did not.  The officer at this time determined that the wife had broken into the husband’s home, which is a burglary (Second Degree Felony, punishable by up to 15 years in Florida State Prison).  Further complicating matters for the wife, since she took the firearms out of the home, she was charged with an armed burglary (First Degree Felony, punishable by up to life in Florida State Prison).  The wife was also charged with two counts of Grand Theft of a Firearm (Third Degree Felony, Punishable by up to 5 years in Florida State Prison).

In first appearance count, the Judge Determined probable cause existed, and set bonds of $1000.00 for each grand theft and no bond on the armed burglary.  It is important to note, that a punishable by life felony under Florida law gives the Judge the ability to set no bond.  The wife’s attorney filed a motion to set bond shortly after the defendant’s arrest in which the Judge went from the no bond on the armed burglary charge to a $5,000.00 bond in which the wife posted shortly after. Continue reading

52 Thefts in Jacksonville Retail Stores leads to the Arrest of Four People in Jacksonville.

A recent News4Jax story shed light on a theft ring operating in Jacksonville Florida over the past two years.  The individuals targeted Lowes and Home Depot home improvement stores from 2017 to 2019.  The four would specifically steal high end power tools from the businesses.  The news report states the total loss for the retails stores is in excess of $83,000.00.  Currently arrested are Nicole Arnette, Samantha Cowles, Brian Hudson, and Keith Wright.

A review of the court files gives details into the investigation and charges that each individual faces.  The investigation was run by the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office and appears will be prosecuted by the Attorney General’s Statewide Prosecution Unit.  All of the police reports have yet to be released by Florida’s Public Records law.

Nicole Arnette is currently charged with Conspiracy to Violate Rico Laws (First Degree Felony),  25 Counts of Grand Theft (Third Degree Felony) and one count of Petit Theft (First Degree Misdemeanor).  Arnette also has a second case with two charges of Petit Theft.

Samantha Cowles is currently charged with Dealing in Stolen Property and Petit Theft.

Brian Hudson is currently charged with Conspiracy to Violate Rico Laws (First Degree Felony),  55 Counts of Grand Theft (Third Degree Felony) and three counts of Petit Theft (First Degree Misdemeanor).

Keith Wright is charged with 55 Counts of Grand Theft (Third Degree Felony) and three counts of Petit Theft (First Degree Misdemeanor).

The Investigation

In the limited amount of released police reports it is clear this was a long term investigation conducted by the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office.  In the arrest of Samantha Cowles law enforcement conducted surveillance of Hudson who drove to Cowles house to pick her up.  The two then drove directly to a Home Depot in the Regency area.  At this time Cowles entered the business, walked to the tool section and stole a power tool battery valued at $258.00 and exited without paying for the item.  Cowles was captured on security surveillance stealing the item.

After Cowles exited the store, she got back into the car with Hudson.  The two then drove to a Popeyes parking lot and met with an unidentified male and exchanged the battery for an undetermined amount of currency.  Once the transaction was completed, Hudson and Cowles left the parking lot together.  JSO kept surveillance on the two during this entire time.

The detective in the case sought a warrant for the above crime involving Cowles.  She received a bond amount of $15,003.00 for the Dealing in Stolen Property and $1,003.00 for the Petit Theft. Cowles was arrested on the warrant on June 19, 2019.   A current check of the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office Inmate Search shows that Cowles has not bonded out. Continue reading

NO VIOLENCE, NO BURGLARIES OR ROBBERIES

As 2018 draws to a close, it is a time of giving for many people and businesses here in Jacksonville and the North Florida area.  A handful of seemingly successful people are facing charges or have entered pleas to charges of theft, embezzlement, schemes to defraud, insurance fraud and theft of government funds. If someone included in this post has entered a plea the the charges, that person no longer enjoys the presumption of innocence and is awaiting sentencing.  All others mentioned, who have not entered pleas, are entitled to the continued presumption of innocence and to the assistance of their counsel.  These particular defendants all happen to be well educated. They all made salaries above the local  average standard of living.  Most took advantage of being  placed into a position of trust, had access to some form of cash or disbursements,  and lastly, a few operated in  organizations that were grossly incompetent in the area of basic internal accounting controls.  There is absolutely no violence in these alleged crimes. No victim had their car burglarized, home or business burglarized or a gun stuck in their face as they went to an ATM.  These crimes took place, per reading the reports, by simple email correspondence or mainly by the filling out of paperwork on nothing more than 8 1/2 x11 copy paper. It is doubtful that any of these defendants ever had even the slightest criminal record, otherwise, they would not have held their former pre-arrest positions.  These were crimes of opportunity. These cases always have a paper trail and are difficult to defend.  The cases can be prosecuted by the Federal Government or State of Florida.

“STEALING WHEN I SHOULD HAVE BEEN BUYING” ( ROCK BAND URIAH HEEP, 1973)

Three of the largest series of fraud and thefts locally, as charged,  involved the the setting up of false vendors with subsequent false invoices, for goods and or services that never existed,  that one’s employer, client or SBA loan administrator would then disburse funds against.  Two former Jacksonville City Council members are are, so far, heading to trial in a case where an SBA loan and a loan from the city of Jacksonville were granted for a business to produce and market Barbeque sauce. Here is that indictment. Again these defendants are presumed innocent are all represented by very competent attorneys.  In St. Johns County, the highest ranking civilian employee of the Sheriff’s office reportedly stole around $700,000 over several years. She is accused of creating fake vendors, issuing fake purchase orders, creating fake invoices, approving disbursements/payments against those invoices and then mailing the government checks to a couple of addresses she supplied.  She was reportedly stealing, among other  grant money that was allocated by the federal government to fight the opioid addiction crisis in St. Johns County. Two coworkers apparently turned her in.  She was never suspected of any wrongdoing as a result of an audit. The Sheriff, David Shoar, seemed crushed by this woman’s arrest. She had been at the agency since she started in her teens, obtained a bachelor’s degree and eventually became the top administrative civilian as finance director. For years her office was steps away from the Sheriff and she was on a direct reporting basis to him. This case will be prosecuted in state court in St. Augustine, however, the investigation was done by the Polk County Sheriff’s office and the prosecutor assigned is from a completely different circuit, the 10th circuit, on what is called a Governor’s Assignment to eliminate even the perception of impropriety.  The Sheriff also thinks the department will somehow recover the almost $700,000 even when the investigation determined that only $9,000 remained. Per the news articles the defendant worked around 15 feet from the Sheriff in an office close to his and when confronted supposedly stated she had a “spending addiction.” Continue reading

BURGLARS UNIDENTIFIED AT PRESENT BUT A CLEAR VIDEO RECORDING EXISTS

A recent News4Jax story is attempting to help catch to car burglars who were captured on home security surveillance system.  The report states that the car burglaries took place on Jacksonville’s Northside.  As is often common in car burglary cases, the car doors were unlocked.  The two men were recorded pulling on car handles, and if unlocked, the two would enter the cars and start rummaging throughout the cars looking for anything of value.  The story stresses to homeowners the importance of removing valuables from your motor vehicles as well as to make sure your car door are locked.

Car burglaries are becoming an all too popular crime.  They can certainly be labeled as a crime of opportunity in that the individuals committing the crimes almost always try and seek cars that have unlocked doors.  The crime is often referred to as “Car Hopping.”  The suspects often times pick areas with lots of cars such as an apartment complex or hotel parking lot.  It only takes one car left unlocked that contains a laptop, I-Pad, or law enforcement’s biggest concern, a firearm. Thefts and Car Burglaries also tend to rise in the summer time.  Law Enforcement typically blames the correlation on the amount of juveniles out of school for the summer.  It is typically a crime committed by juveniles and it is almost always committed with several juveniles working together.

The News4Jax story posted still shots captured on the security cameras of the individuals in the recent car burglary story.  The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office will likely receive tips as to the two individuals based on the still shots.  Once identified, the Sheriff’s Office will likely seek a warrant from the State Attorney’s Office for their arrest.  The Sheriff’s Office will also have spoken to the owner of the cars to determine what personal property was stolen.  A pawn search can be conducted once the specific items are determined missing to see if any of the stolen property was in fact pawned.  A serial number is normally the easiest way to prove an item belonging to the victim was pawned.

The charges the two individuals face in the event they are properly identified is Burglary to a Structure or Conveyance, a third degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison and a $5,000.00 fine.  To prove the crime of Burglary to a Conveyance the State of Florida is required to prove two elements beyond a reasonable doubt.  First the State must prove that the suspect entered a conveyance owned by or in the possession of the victim.  Second, the State must prove at the time of entering the conveyance, the suspect had the intent to commit a crime within that conveyance.What is important to point out regarding the elements of the crime is that for someone to be found guilty of a burglary the State must prove an individual had the intent to commit a crime within the car.  The State will rely on the security camera showing the individuals rummaging through the vehicles as well as the victim’s testimony regarding what items are now missing from the car.  Continue reading

RECENT NEWS REPORTS DETAIL THE RECENT ARREST OF WILLIAM SHEPARD ELLISON

Ellison who owns Shep’s Discount Furniture on Normandy Boulevard and Shep’s Chicken and Auction House on Beaver Street, was in the news last year upon his arrest for Trafficking in Hydrocodone and Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon.  Those charges arose out of a Florida Department of Law Enforcement raid on Eillison’s home and business pursuant to a search warrant.  Those charges were later dropped by the State Attorney’s Office.

The recent arrest, per the reports, is out of a long term, two state, multi county, investigation by Florida’s Attorney General’s Office.  Ellison turned himself into Orange County law enforcement authorities on a $1.5 Million Dollar Warrant.  The details regarding the investigation are still coming into news outlets but what has been reported thus far is the Ellison’s two stores were utilized as  clearing houses for stolen merchandise.  Some of the items sold by Ellison were beer, power tools, appliances, and energy drinks.  The merchandise was stolen from semi-trucks and containers in Georgia and Florida and brought to Ellison for re-sale.  The total value of the merchandise is estimated at over one million dollars. Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi personally held a news conference announcing the arrest of Ellison as well as two other men, Pedro Hernandez and Lewis Dominguez.  A fourth man, Juan Carlos Castaneda Quintana is currently at large according to authorities.  News4Jax and The Florida Times Union have both reported on the recent arrest of Ellison.

THE POTENTIAL CHARGES ELLISON FACES

Ellison certainly faces an uphill battle regarding his charges.  In any Racketeering (RICO) case the State of Florida will build in certain predicate acts to prove the RICO charge.  Each violation of Florida Law may be added as charges against Ellison as the additional charges show the ongoing criminal activity. In Florida Racketeering Activity means to commit, to attempt to commit, to conspire to commit, or to solicit, coerce, or intimidate another person to commit any crime that is chargeable by petition, indictment, or information under several of the Florida Statutes, to include theft, dealing in stolen property, and schemes to defraud.  The State of Florida is required to prove that the pattern of racketeering activity, happened on at least two incidents of racketeering conduct that have the same or similar intents, results, accomplices, victims, or methods of commission or that otherwise are interrelated by distinguishing characteristics and are not isolated incidents.

The State of Florida will rely on each individual illegal act committed by Ellison.  The largest charge jumping out at the reading of the news stories is the charge of dealing in stolen property under Florida State Statute 812.019.  Dealing in stolen property is defined as “Any person who traffic in, or endeavors to traffic in, property that he or she knows or should know was stolen shall be guilty of a felony of the second degree.”  For Ellison and the others mentioned earlier, each time stolen merchandise was brought to Ellison for Ellison too in turn sell through his stores, a separate dealing in stolen property charge can be added.  Every time Ellison knowingly purchased stolen property he committed a second degree felony punishable by up to fifteen years in Florida State Prison.  Further each time Ellison sold the stolen merchandise he committed an additional dealing in stolen property.  The State of Florida will take each of the sales of merchandise among the individuals charges as predicate offenses to the racketeering.

Although Ellison appears to be the clearing house for all of the stolen merchandise, if the State of Florida has evidence that Ellison orchestrated the stealing of the merchandise to begin with, Ellison may further be charged with Grand Theft under 812.014 of the Florida Statutes.  A person commits theft if he or she knowingly obtains or uses, or endeavors to obtain or to use, the property of another with intent to, either temporarily or permanently deprive the other person or a right to the property or a benefit from the property.  Even if Ellison himself did not physically steal the trucks, if he orchestrated it, encouraged it, or enticed others to do it, the principal theory under Florida law would allow Ellison to also be charged with the Grand Theft charges.  Ellison may face a first degree felony punishable by up to thirty years in prison based on the amount of stolen property being greater than $100,000.00.

Racketeering in and of itself is set up in a manner to take down an entire criminal enterprise.  The initial cases against the Mafia utilized at the time the new Racketeering laws.  The heads of the Mafia families, although personally not committing the crimes themselves, benefited from the illegal activity.  In the case of Ellison, it appears he was also a willing participant in the criminal activity. Ellison, although arrested on very serious charges on what is setting itself up to be a high profile prosecution by Attorney General Pam Bondi’s office, is entitled to the presumption of innocence and to have his attorneys confront his accusers by taking the case to a jury trial.  Continue reading

Several Car Burglaries Reported in St. Johns County

Recent news stories detail the arrest of a 14 year old boy in regards to several car burglaries in St. Johns County.  The 14 year old can’t be named because juvenile names are not allowed to be disclosed under Florida law.  The 14 year old has been charged with armed burglary to a conveyance and grand theft.  The 14 year old currently remains in the custody of the Juvenile Justice Department.  A 17 year old co-defendant is currently on the run at this time. The News4Jax story states that the 4-5 vehicles broken into were all unlocked, and firearms along with other personal items were stolen.  It is often known by car burglars that people keep firearms, laptops, tablets, and other high end electronics in addition to cash and change inside of their vehicles. A separate news story published by the Florida Times Union details the concerns of law enforcement in regards to car burglaries.  The title of the Times Union Story says it at, “Sheriff: Guns stolen from unlocked cars may be contributing to violent crime.”  It is quite often that law enforcement officials blame car burglars for supplying guns to criminals on the street.

Crime of Opportunity

Most Car Burglaries are very similar in nature.  They are often committed by juveniles, often times with more than one juvenile at a time, in upper scale neighborhoods or apartment complexes, with the vehicles being found unlocked.  When these type of cases come into play, a group of juveniles get together and walk a neighborhood, going car to car, checking door handles to see if the vehicle is in fact unlocked.  Once an unlocked vehicle is located, the juveniles will “toss” the vehicle to take anything of value.  It is common that in a single neighborhood, the juveniles will locate several cars during the night to break into.  The tough question for law enforcement and state attorneys is proving which vehicle was broken into by which juvenile.  This can be proven by which property if found on which juvenile, where the juvenile is taken into custody, and what the juvenile tells law enforcement when caught.  The simplicity and low cost of surveillance cameras have also assisted law enforcement in the arresting of people breaking into cars.  The St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office has even given images to several news outlets in an attempt to help locate the 17 year old still on the run. Continue reading

Teens Steal Purses in Coordinated Theft

A recent report by News4Jax states that nearly $18,000 of high end purses were stolen from a Kate Spade store at the St. Augustine Outlet Mall.  The theft happened during normal business hours.  The police report states that between seven or eight teens “burst” into the store, spread out, and grabbed 46 handbags/purses and ran out of the store.  A store employee attempted to block the door, but was unable to stop the thieves.  The teens were observed getting into a vehicle and the tag number was forwarded to law enforcement.

This style of theft is commonly referred to as a “Flash Mob.”  The goal is to get enough people involved knowing that a small store will not have the man power loss prevention people in place to stop everyone involved.  Here the seven to eight teens were able to storm the store and take 46 handbags/purses, and the employees of Kate Spade were not able to stop a single teen.  Across the country these types of thefts have occurred on a larger scale at larger retailers like WalMart and Target.

INVESTIGATION LEADS TO ARREST AND RESIGNATION

According to a report, a Jacksonville firefighter has resigned his employment following his arrest for petit theft.  Firefighter Joshua Williams was arrested on November 22, 2016, subsequent to an investigation by the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office Integrity Unit. Williams was assigned to a “tactical support unit” keeping himself busy delivering supplies to various fire stations around town.  The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office had received a complaint regarding several thefts of money at different fire stations throughout town.  It was determined that Williams had been present at the various stations where the money came up missing.  Police set up a sting operation by placing cash inside a fire station’s kitchen area.  The kitchen area was placed under video surveillance.  Williams made a delivery to this station and upon his departure it was determined that $167.00 of cash placed in the kitchen by the police integrity unit was missing.  Police detained Williams at a nearby gas pump and located the missing $167.00.

MARKED MONEY

A common tactic used by Law Enforcement is to “Mark the Bills” or record the serial numbers on cash used in sting operations.  It is especially common in narcotics related investigations where law enforcement purchases illegal narcotics from a drug dealer.  When the drug dealer is arrested the goal is to catch him or her with the same dollar bills handed over by law enforcement.  In the case of Williams, the integrity unit photocopied the bills’ serial numbers before placing them inside of the station’s kitchen.   Since serial numbers are unique, the integrity unit can now show that Williams possessed the stolen money from within the Station’s Kitchen.

AMOUNT OR ITEM STOLEN TYPICALLY DICTATES THE CHARGE

There are several different types of theft charges in the State of Florida governed by Florida State Statute Chapter 812.  The most common are Petit Theft and Grand Theft.  Often times the difference between the charge being a Felony Theft Charge or Misdemeanor Theft Charge is the amount of money the item is valued at or what particular item was stolen.    In Florida if the amount stolen is valued at more than $300.00 the charge involved is Grand Theft, a third degree felony, punishable by up to five years in Florida State Prison.  If the amount is valued at $100.00 or more but less than $300.00 the charge involved is a Petit Theft, a first degree misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in the County Jail.  If the amount involved is less than $100.00 the charge is Petit Theft, a second degree misdemeanor, punishable by up to 60 days in the County Jail. Certain items stolen are automatically considered Grand Theft regardless of the amount the item is worth.  For example if someone were to steal a firearm, regardless of the value, the individual could face a felony Grand Theft charge.In the case of Williams, he faces a first degree misdemeanor Petit Theft based on the amount of cash stolen totaling $167.00.  It is not known if the Integrity Unit placed more cash inside of the kitchen in an attempt to have Williams steal a felony amount which would be $300.00 or more. Continue reading

“Car Hopping” Becomes More Prevalent in Early Summer

According to an article in News4Jax.com, the crime of auto burglary, or as Florida law labels it, “burglary to a conveyance”, has picked up in Northern St. John’s county.  The article stated  the lasted rash of burglaries to conveyances has occurred at strip centers and even in high end gated communities.  The Florida statute that covers all of this is S810.02(b).  The term “conveyance” according to Florida Law, “means any motor vehicle, ship, vessel, railroad vehicle or car, trailer, aircraft, or sleeping car.”  The crime of burglary is as old as time.  If one enters a dwelling, structure or conveyance with the intent to commit an offense once inside, that is a burglary. Many of the criminally accused are shocked when they find out that actual entry of the dwelling, structure or conveyance is not required to prove the crime of burglary. As an example, a criminal that goes beneath an off grade  building to cut out copper wiring and plumbing commits a burglary when he touches the building.  Going on a rooftop and kicking the air-conditioner down to the ground so one’s buddies can haul off the metal guts to the unit is a similar example of burglary.  In auto burglaries, the burglary starts when a person touches the car with the intent of getting inside of it and committing and offense.  Sticking one’s arm into a open car window can be a burglary to a conveyance.

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Veteran Police Sergeant Falsified Work Records

St. Johns County Sheriff David Shoar terminated a veteran police sergeant after a month long investigation into falsified police records.  Sgt. Monroe West, a 17 year veteran and leader of other officers in the department was arrested for two felony counts of schemes to defraud and a public servant falsifying official documents.  He was booked into the same jail he has taken others to for 17 years.  At this point in time he is presumed innocent and is afforded the same rights as any other person arrested and charged with a criminal offense.

The Sheriff Says the Sgt. Falsified His Time Card

Sgt. West brought attention to himself and was reported by other officers who noticed inaccuracies in his documentation.  In many police departments officers are allowed to work secondary employment for citizens and businesses.  The hours worked for secondary employment must be turned in to the officer’s department.  Here, West turned in paperwork showing he was working an off duty detail for pay ,as it turned out, during the same hours he was on the taxpayer’s clock as a supervising sergeant.  Apparently, this happened on several occasions according to Commander Chuck Mulligan of the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office with the amount of double-dipping going into the thousands.  As in most fraud and deception cases, once a paper trail is established, the charges are hard to deny.  Here, the Sgt. was easily caught.

Jacksonville Officer Arrested for Official Misconduct, Falsifying Records and Grand Theft Jacksonville also had an officer arrested for the same type of false reporting in October of 2013, who resigned after being arrested for what started out as suspicious overtime submissions  investigated by the integrity unit.  Career Jacksonville Sheriff’s officer Dan Hamlin was arrested on 27 felony counts including grand theft, official misconduct and falsifying official records.  Most charges were dropped but he still faces five felony charges.  Hamlin stands accused of  turning in bogus overtime requests claiming hours he spent working on cases  with prosecutors preparing cases for trial.  The problem for Hamlin is  the integrity unit discovered that Hamlin was reporting hours on cases closed months before. He also stated he met to prepare for trial with certain prosecutors who have stated they never met with him, therefore, couldn’t have worked a case with him.  Investigators even recovered an eatery receipt from across town, on Hamlin’s bankcard, with his signature, for the exact time he was reportedly meeting with a prosecutor at the state attorney’s office.   According to the affidavit for the arrest warrant,  Hamlin’s fellow officers, as well as the judge who signed the warrant, believed  probable cause existed for 26 false submissions by Hamlin, each submission a felony charge.  The amount of money at issue was shockingly low, $4425.02 per records, compared to what this officer has lost and could face in the future.  Sgt. West was caught because he falsified records stating he was in two different places but at the same time.  Hamlin was caught because he falsified records stating he was working overtime prepping cases(which had been closed for months) for trial with certain state attorneys(who never met him).

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