(WHEATON) The village manager of Schaumburg, where three police detectives have been accused of withholding and reselling illegal drugs they seized from dealers, said on Thursday the three have placed on administrative leave and could be terminated.
The detectives were identified as John Cichy, 30, a 10-year Schaumburg police veteran; Matthew Hudak, 29, a five-year veteran; and Terrence O’ Brien, 47, who has been an officer for 23 years.
All three are charged with a host of felonies, including unlawful delivery of a controlled substance, armed violence, unlawful criminal drug conspiracy, theft and burglary, the Sun-Times is reporting. They were ordered jailed Thursday on $750,000 cash bonds.
The three allegedly took part in an elaborate plan for at least six months that involved withholding drugs taken during arrests and then reselling them through a street dealer, DuPage County prosecutors said during their bond hearing. The drugs allegedly sold included marijuana and cocaine, authorities said.
The alleged plan came to light earlier this month as part of a drug investigation being conducted by Carol Stream police.
An informant told investigators the officers had contacted him about six months ago to sell drugs given to him by the cops, prosecutor Audrey Anderson said in court.
After his arrest, O’Brien told investigators he took part in the scheme “for the thrill of it,” Anderson said.
“He did not have any money problems,” she said, though authorities contended the veteran officer was living “two lives.”
O’Brien was married, but also had a girlfriend living in the area with whom he had a child, Anderson said in court.
His girlfriend also faces drug charges stemming from her alleged participation in the drug scheme.
But Hudak’s attorney questioned the charges, saying Hudak typically dealt with drug informants and made drug buys as part of his duties as a narcotics investigator.
“This is part and parcel of what they do,” defense attorney Thomas Glasgow said.
“You’ve got what appears to be a snitch turning around and making accusations against the officers who arrested him,” Glasgow said.
Village Manager Ken Fritz, in a statement Thursday afternoon, said it was “very disappointing” to learn of the allegations, “whenever we learn that officers have broken the law ... we view it as a betrayal of the trust our community puts in them.”
He said the three will be held accountable. “... the Village of Schaumburg fully supports efforts to prosecute these officers to the fullest extent under the law,” Fritz said.
“Upon learning of the arrests yesterday, the village took immediate steps to place these officers on administrative leave. We also launched our own internal investigation. If upon internal review and proof of the allegations is found, the Village will seek to terminate these employees subject to due process.”
-- Sun-Times, Sun-Times Media Wire