Former SW Michigan police chief charged with stealing drugs while in office
A woman who served as a police chief in southwestern Michigan was charged Wednesday with stealing and selling drugs when she led the department.
Tressa Beltran resigned as Hartford’s police chief in January, six months after investigators searched police department offices.
In announcing the charges, the Michigan Attorney General's office said that Beltran "sold controlled substances, stole controlled substances, used her influence to extort others to provide her with controlled substances, illegally possessed several different types of controlled substances, and committed embezzlement."
She has admitted stealing prescription drugs, especially hydrocodone, from a disposal box at the police department, according to search warrants.
Beltran knew charges were coming and has “undergone extensive (drug) treatment,” defense attorney Don Sappanos said.
“She has her problem under control,” Sappanos told a judge.
Beltran, 57, was charged with nine crimes, eight of them felonies, including embezzlement, extortion and possession of controlled substances.
Judge Michael McKay set bond at $100,000, calling the allegations “the most egregious kind of assault” against the public’s trust in police.
Beltran became a Hartford police officer in 1989 and was promoted to chief in 2016.
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