A second person is now charged in connection with the ongoing federal investigation into possible police corruption in Tulsa.
Officer John “JJ” K. Gray retired from the department last week and on Monday he pleaded guilty to stealing money in a drug sting staged by federal investigators.
Gray has been with TPD since 1990 and administrators say he’s had a clean record.
U.S. Attorney and Special Prosecutor of the Eastern District of Arkansas Jane Duke says Gray pleaded guilty to stealing $1,000 from a meth sting pulled off by the federal officials.
"Through information that the cooperating individual provided it became apparent that the situation was present that JJ Gray would have the interest in pursuing a drug dealer having cash and drugs if he had the opportunity," says Duke in a phone interview.
A release issued by Duke says on May 18th, 2009 at a Motel 8 in Tulsa federal officials set up a drug sting, “…the room was equipped with audio and video recording equipment ... The room itself was staged with $13,000..."
The release says federal agents were watching from the exterior of hotel, “...the video recording shows Gray, on two separate occasions during the search of the room, placing a portion of the cash into his back pants pocket."
Duke says Gray told the cooperating witness that he found $8,000 in the motel room when $13,000 in federal money had been planted.
The prosecutor says $5,000 was divided between Gray and three other Tulsa police officers.
However, Duke mentions the officers were tipped off when they recognized a federal agent at the scene.
"That aroused suspicion on their part and as a result of that they became concerned that this was a federal set up and the money that had previously been taken by the individual officers was re-accumulated and put back with the portion that had been turned in from the hotel room," says Duke on the phone.
In exchange for a guilty plea Duke says Gray will not face additional charges. She also says she expects other officers to face federal charges.
"Certainly those officers face potential for federal charges. They may have the opportunity to work those charges, those potential charges out short of a formal indictment, whether that is waiving indictment and pleading guilty or working out some other form of cooperation that we might have available," says Duke on the phone.
Gray is scheduled to be sentenced in October. He could face up to ten years in prison.
As part of the possible police corruption investigation former ATF agent Brandon McFadden pleaded guilty to planting drugs and stealing money in another incident.
During his plea he dropped the name of TPD Gang Officer Jeff Henderson multiple times as a counterpart. Federal officials confirm he is being investigated.
However, Henderson has not been charged and denies any wrongdoing. His attorney also says Henderson has passed two polygraph tests.
Henderson is on paid administrative leave.
Since the investigation eleven people have been freed from district and federal prison and some of them are previously convicted felons.
The cases tainted by bad information either from officers and or confidential informants. Some of those informants now admit they lied.
In the latest allegations involving TPD Officer JJ Gray there are three other officers named. Gray is the only officer that has been charged in the most recent investigation.
"I would anticipate say that we are seeking indictments in the not too distant future," says Duke on the phone. "I would hate to put any specific number on it but I would say it's exceeded five officers it will probably closer to somewhere around ten."
McFadden faces a maximum sentence of forty years in prison along with a $2 million fine. He is scheduled to be sentenced July 28th.
Gray could face up to ten years in prison but he is expected to get probation as part of a plea deal. He’ll be sentenced in October.