Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Police Chief William Moore Fired for Passing Counterfeit Money at Wal-Mart


The acting police chief of this northeastern Oklahoma town has been fired and is under investigation for allegedly passing counterfeit bills at a Vinita Wal-Mart.

Fairland's acting Police Chief William Ray Moore, who was fired Friday, is listed on a Vinita police report as the suspect caught on a surveillance video passing four counterfeit bills while in uniform.

The U.S. Secret Service is investigating whether the counterfeit bills were evidence seized in an earlier counterfeiting case investigated by Moore and Secret Service officers, The Oklahoman reported.

A man thought to be Moore was recorded buying a prepaid Visa card with four counterfeit $100 bills on Oct. 17 around 6:40 p.m., according to the police report.

The suspect had a holstered pistol and was wearing a polo style police shirt with an embroidered badge, the report states. The shirt had the word “Fairland” on it, a Wal-Mart assistant manager recalled.

The Vinita Police Department seized the counterfeit bills and turned them over to the Secret Service, which has jurisdiction over investigations involving counterfeit money.

Moore, 31, could not be reached for comment.

Moore was listed as the arresting officer in a case in August in which Tawni Lorene Gaines, 36, of Fairland was charged with forgery and second-degree counterfeiting. Gaines admitted using a copier/scanner to make the counterfeit bills, Moore wrote in the affidavit.

The charge against Gaines initially was filed in Ottawa County District Court and evidence reportedly was being held by the Fairland Police Department while Gaines was awaiting her preliminary hearing.

Eric Wade, Fairland's town attorney, confirmed Monday that Moore is no longer acting police chief or with the police department.

Wade also confirmed Secret Service agents were in the rural Ottawa County community for the last four days, but declined to say what they are investigating.

Charles McLoughlin, assistant U.S. attorney in Tulsa, said it is against Department of Justice policy to confirm or deny the existence of a pending investigation.


Information from: The Oklahoman, http://www.newsok.com

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