Six Louisville Metro Police officers were indicted Monday on felony theft charges, accused of working private security jobs while clocked in for their patrol shifts.
A Jefferson County grand jury returned an indictment for one count of theft by deception for six officers: Michael Abnerathy Jr., Dontae Booker, Cortez Ernest, Jackie Miller, Ashley Spratt and Roniqua Yocum.
The indictment provides few details but alleges the theft occurred between January and November of 2018.
It’s also unclear how much money was involved, though the officers’ charges are for an amount over $500 but less than $10,000.
A press release from the Jefferson commonwealth’s attorney office said the “work fraud scheme” involved the officers working and getting paid for private security jobs during their city government patrol shifts.
The security jobs were arranged by a company created by Miller, according to prosecutors.
See also: Pilot accused of 2015 triple murder in Western Kentucky arrested
Department policy allows officers to work secondary jobs, though they can’t conflict with the officer’s work for the department.
In a statement, Col. Michael Sullivan, the deputy chief of police, said an investigation by the Public Integrity Unit — which investigates possible criminal wrongdoing by Metro Government employees — was initiated several months ago after “we discovered possible criminal behavior by several officers.”
“We take allegations of officers involved in criminal wrongdoing seriously,” Sullivan said.
All except Abernathy were also indicted on a charge of criminal syndication: engaging in organized crime.
Abernathy was indicted on a criminal facilitation to criminal syndication charge, accused of facilitating the acts of others.
Miller also was indicted on a charge of tampering with physical evidence. The tampering happened on March 19, 2019, the indictment notes.
All six officers are on administrative reassignment, Sullivan said. Arraignment is set for 9 a.m. May 20 in Jefferson Circuit Court.
Attorney Steve Schroering, who represents Spratt, declined to comment. Brian Butler, who represents Miller, and Nick Mudd, who represents Booker and Yokum, said their clients were disappointed by the indictments.
Crime news : Lexington Islamic leader, 2 others charged in murder-for-hire plot
The officers’ dates of hire are:
- Officer Jackie Miller: November 2008
- Officer Ashley Spratt: October 2016
- Officer Roniqua Yokum: September 2015
- Officer Cortez Ernest: September 2009
- Officer Dontae Booker: February 2016
- Officer Michael Abernathy: September 2014
Darcy Costello: 502-582-4834; email@example.com; Twitter: @dctello. Support strong local journalism by subscribing today: courier-journal.com/darcyc. Reporter Matthew Glowicki can be reached at 502-582-4989 or firstname.lastname@example.org.