Sunday, September 15, 2013
Courts - "Former Gary cop gets 30 months; faked letters to judge, court finds "
A former Gary police officer will spend 30 months in prison after a federal judge found that he played a role in sending fraudulent letters of support to the court.The story continues with more details.
“There’s no doubt in my mind that (David Finley) had some involvement with these letters,” U.S. District Judge Joseph Van Bokkelen said during Finley’s sentencing hearing Friday afternoon.
Finley pleaded guilty earlier this year to selling marijuana and lying when he bought a gun, saying it was for himself when he immediately gave it to a friend who turned out to be working for the FBI as an undercover informant. Finley resigned from the police department shortly after he was arrested a year ago.
Earlier this summer, Finley submitted more than 100 pages of letters of support, which judges consider when coming up with a sentence, from about 25 family members, friends and former co-workers. Many of the letters described Finley as a “super cop.” However, federal officials discovered at least two of the letters had been faked and another was written by Finley with a friend’s permission.
“The real travesty in that is this court relies on those letters,” Van Bokkelen said. “I’ll never again read them the same way.”
The judge added that future defendants could be harmed by this and that he might change his policy on how he handles character letters, including making the letter writers take an oath that they actually wrote them.
Posted by Marcia Oddi on September 15, 2013 06:42 PM
Posted to Ind Fed D.Ct. Decisions