A former Baton Rouge police narcotics officer was accused Wednesday of stealing three shotguns and more than $27,000 in cash that was to be used as evidence in drug cases.
Michael Thompson, 28, 26239 Burlwood Road, Denham Springs, was indicted by an East Baton Rouge Parish grand jury on 16 counts of theft.
The indictment alleges the thefts stretched from Sept. 28, 2010, to April 2.
Thompson resigned from the department shortly after he was arrested April 13 on seven counts of theft that accused him of stealing $15,000 in seized cash.
“We’ve since found out more information,’’ Assistant State Attorney General David Caldwell told 19th Judicial District Court Commissioner Rachel Morgan in explaining why Thompson was indicted on 16 counts of theft as opposed to seven.
“It really does go beyond the money,’’ Caldwell said afterward. “He screwed up 16 valid narcotics cases.’’
“This is as bad a violation of public trust as we have come across,’’ fellow Assistant Attorney General Butch Wilson added.
Police have said Thompson blamed his addiction to prescription pain medication for the thefts. Thompson was a five-year veteran of the police force.
The indictment accuses Thompson of stealing as little as $30 on Sept. 28, 2010, and as much as $9,565 on Dec. 27. He also is accused of stealing $6,500 on Dec. 26 and $3,600 on April 2.
Police have said Thompson stole the money from cases in which he was either the lead investigator or assisted in the investigation. The thefts could affect the narcotics cases as they go to trial, police stated.
The thefts were discovered when an upcoming narcotics case was being prepared for trial and investigators noticed money to be used as evidence was missing, police said.
Thompson was the narcotics officer assigned to that case, police added. Thompson’s case has been assigned to state District Judge Richard Anderson.