Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Local News

September 15, 2013

Ind. judge: Ex-cop sent court fraudulent letters

Ind. judge: Ex-cop sent court fraudulent letters

HAMMOND (AP) — A federal judge who sentenced a former Gary police officer to 30 months in prison on drug and gun charges said the man committed a “travesty” by sending his court faked letters of support.

U.S. District Judge Joseph Van Bokkelen told David Finley at Friday’s sentencing hearing he has no doubt Finley was involved in sending his court fraudulent character letters — the letters judges consider when determining sentences.

“The real travesty in that is this court relies on those letters. I’ll never again read them the same way,” Van Bokkelen said.

The judge not only took away Finley’s credit for taking responsibility for his crime, but added to his sentence. He said Finley had obstructed justice by sending the faked letters.

Finley had submitted more than 100 pages of letters of support earlier this summer from about 25 relatives, friends and former co-workers. Many of them described Finley as a “super cop.”

But federal officials discovered that at least two of the submitted letters had been faked and another was written by Finley with a friend’s permission, the Post-Tribune reported.

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