An Ohio cop is facing up to 20 years in prison after federal investigators exposed a decade long scheme with another officer to falsify search warrants in order to steal more than $250,000 in cash and property.
Former Reynoldsburg Police Lt. Shane Mauger has agreed to plead guilty to one count each of depriving citizens of civil rights and stealing from federal programs, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said on Wednesday.
Each charge carries up to 10 years in prison and Mauger, 41, is said to have planted evidence in order to illegally obtain search warrants so that he could enter the homes of alleged drug dealers in order to take their money.
Mauger engaged in the scheme with his partner, Officer Ty Downard, who the FBI started investigating after an informant said the cop was providing him with drugs to sell, including some from earlier police seizures.
Investigators said Downard stole narcotics including heroin, cocaine, marijuana and Percocet pills during seizures and allegedly made 20 deals for the drugs between the period of October 2015 and February 2016 alone.
Downard committed suicide by hanging himslef in the Delaware County Jail while awaiting trail in February, and charges were later dismissed against 15 people after prosecutors determined that their cases had been tainted.
Franklin County prosecutors say that there are six pending non drug cases involving Mauger that will probably not be impaired and three open drug cases that will be thrown out. Additionally, at least 10 convictions will be revisited to analyze Mauger’s involvement.
Mauger had been with the Reynoldsburg police department for 20 years and was named officer of the year in 2008 for his work on the narcotics unit. Chief James O’Neill said the Lt. resigned on Friday.
U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, Benjamin Glassman, said that the federal probe will end with Mauger’s plea – which is expected to come at a court appearance scheduled for next Wednesday.
“It’s crucial that when there is a corrupt police officer we find that person, we catch him, and we make sure that the police officer is punished for the criminal conduct and never becomes a corrupt police officer again,” Glassman said.
Because Mauger is said to have cooperated with authorities, he likely won’t face the full 20 year sentence for both of his charges. Predictably, he will be get far less time than anyone else that hasn’t adorned a magic costume.