Former head of officers' group gets prison term for fraud

AP News
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Posted: Dec 12, 2016 5:46 PM

ST. LOUIS (AP) — A former St. Louis police sergeant was ordered Monday to spend a year and a day in federal prison for stealing more than $80,000 from the organization for black police officers that he once led.

Darren Randal Wilson, 42, was sentenced in St. Louis three months after pleading guilty to all nine counts of wire fraud he had faced in an indictment.

As the Ethical Society of Police's president in 2013 and 2014, Wilson had access to bank account funds made up primarily of members' dues. Prosecutors say Wilson used the money on a side business promoting nightclub comedy shows. He was indicted in April 2014.

Wilson was suspended from St. Louis' police force last year. Police Chief Sam Dotson has said the department began an investigation in January 2015 after the Ethical Society of Police raised concerns about financial irregularities.

Wilson, who is black, is not related to Darren Wilson, a white Ferguson, Missouri, police officer who fatally shot 18-year-old Michael Brown in August 2014 and later was cleared of wrongdoing and resigned. The shooting set off massive protests.

As part of his guilty pleas in September, Darren Randal Wilson acknowledged he abused his position of public and private trust. He agreed to an $80,934 judgment against him and to surrender his law enforcement certification. He can no longer work in law enforcement or seek employment in the field.

Besides the prison time, he also was sentenced Monday to three years of post-prison supervised release.