The chief of police of a New York town was arrested and charged with a federal drug crime on Oct. 5. If convicted, he could face up to one year in federal prison and be slapped with a $100,000 fine.

According to local media reports, the defendant is accused of taking prescription hydrocodone pills from the New York State Medication Drop Box at the Kenmore Police Station. FBI Special Agents reportedly questioned him about taking the pills, and he allegedly confessed that he is addicted to the opioid painkiller and has been taking pills from the drop box to fuel his addiction. He also allegedly led agents to a closet in his office where he had stashed more than 100 hydrocodone pills for his personal use.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office has charged the defendant with possession of a Schedule II controlled substance. A representative of the office said there was no evidence he had distributed any of the pills to other parties. He has already made an appearance in federal court and was granted a conditional release by the judge. The Kenmore Police Department has placed him on administrative leave.

As this case demonstrates, people can fall victim to drug addiction and find themselves accused of drug crimes. However, no one has to face such charges alone. A criminal defense attorney could carefully review the circumstances surrounding the case and work to protect a defendant’s future. For example, legal counsel may be able to get the charges against a first-time offender dismissed or significantly reduced if he or she agrees to complete a drug diversion program.

Source: WKBW, “Kenmore Chief of Police arrested on drug charge“, Shannon Ross, Oct. 5, 2018