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Former McIntosh Co. Sheriff And Undersheriff Pleads Guilty

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Former Sheriff Terry Jones pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy. Former Sheriff Terry Jones pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy.
According to court filings, the former sheriff and Undersheriff Mykol Brookshire last month embezzled one of six bundles of currency from an undercover FBI agent during a traffic stop. According to court filings, the former sheriff and Undersheriff Mykol Brookshire last month embezzled one of six bundles of currency from an undercover FBI agent during a traffic stop.

By Jennifer Loren, The News On 6

MUSKOGEE, OK -- The former McIntosh County Sheriff and Undersheriff have admitted they were operating on the wrong side of the law.  The two are now convicted felons and could soon find themselves behind bars.  According to the U.S. Attorney's Office both men pleaded guilty to federal conspiracy charges on Thursday at the Federal Courthouse in Muskogee.

Read the charge filed in federal court.

Former McIntosh County Sheriff Terry Jones and former Undersheriff Mykol Brookshire have pleaded guilty to charges they were corrupt cops.  Both men used their positions in law enforcement to commit highway robbery by confiscating motorists' cash.

"They arrived.  They confiscated a large amount of cash. They kept a significant portion of the cash," said U.S. Attorney Sheldon Sperling.

Sperling says most of the cash the men took came from illegal activities like drug deals, but in one stop they stole money from an undercover FBI agent.

According to court documents, Sheriff Jones told the agent if he didn't hand over the cash he would go to jail and the sheriff made him sign a currency release form, which he did.

But, some of that currency was found in Sheriff Jones' office and home after he split it with Undersheriff Brookshire.

On Thursday, the men pled guilty to Conspiracy Under Color of Law to Interfere with Interstate Commerce.  They could spend up to five years in prison and be fined $250,000.

They're both out on bond pending until sentencing.

  • News release from U.S. Attorney Sheldon J. Sperling...

MUSKOGEE, OKLAHOMA - United States Attorney Sheldon J. Sperling announced today, TERRY ALAN JONES, age 36, and MYKOL TRAVIS BROOKSHIRE, age 38, both of Eufaula, pled guilty to Conspiracy Under Color of Law to Interfere with Interstate Commerce.  This offense is punishable by a term of imprisonment not to exceed five years and a fine of not more than $250,000.

      U.S. Attorney Sperling also reported, "Waiver of indictment and change of plea hearings were held in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Oklahoma this morning for both defendants."

"The defendants admitted the time of the charged conspiracy to be from about November 2007 until May 2009," U.S. Attorney Sperling noted.  "Defendant Jones was then Sheriff of McIntosh County.  Defendant Brookshire was then the under-sheriff for McIntosh County." 

      "The object of the charged conspiracy was for the defendants to use their positions as law enforcement officers to illegally obtain cash from motorists traveling in interstate commerce," U.S. Attorney Sperling said.

      "A conviction for federal criminal conspiracy requires sufficient proof of four elements:

  • 1. an agreement with another person to violate the law,
  • 2. knowledge of the essential objective of the conspiracy,
  • 3. knowing and voluntary involvement, and
  • 4. interdependence among the alleged co-conspirators."

        U.S. Attorney Sperling added, "By virtue of their jobs in the McIntosh County Sheriff's Office, the defendants were in positions to execute traffic stops and search for contraband such as weapons, narcotics, or money that was derived from illegal activity."

        "In certain such traffic stop contexts, the defendants encountered large sums of United States currency.  They took either all or a portion of the proceeds, and reported the remaining to the District Attorney as seized money to be forfeited.  The funds defendants illegally obtained were divided relatively evenly between the defendants."

        U.S. Attorney Sperling further reported, "The defendants admitted an occurrence in November 2007.  Defendant Brookshire seized a reported $7,000 from a motorist on I-40 in McIntosh County and released the driver.  Given the facts, the District Attorney's Office declined to forfeit the money.  Nearly a year later, defendant Jones returned the money."

        "On Thursday, May 21, 2009, the defendants confiscated a sum of money from another detained motorist," U.S. Attorney Sperling continued.  "The vehicle was driven by an agent acting in an undercover capacity.  The officer who effected the stop contacted defendant Jones who directed defendant Brookshire to go to the scene.  A search of the vehicle revealed six bundles of currency.  Brookshire took one of the bundles to his patrol car, then placed the other five on the dash of his car.  Defendant Jones then informed the undercover agent that he would be jailed if he failed to complete a release of currency form."

        "Defendant Jones then contacted the office of the Drug Enforcement Administration and advised that they had seized five bundles of currency.  Defendant Jones then presented the undercover agent the release of currency form and again informed him that if he didn't sign the form, he would go to jail.  The undercover agent signed the form and was then released."

"The defendants stole a portion of the confiscated cash."

        "Investigative agencies which participated in this investigation include the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Drug Enforcement Administration-Dallas Field Division, the District 25 Office of the District Attorney, and the Department of Public Safety."

        "Defendants Jones and Brookshire both resigned from office after an initial federal charge was filed on May 22, 2009."      

        "The Honorable Kimberly E. West, Magistrate Judge in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Oklahoma, in Muskogee, accepted the defendants' guilty pleas and ordered the completion of presentence reports.  Sentencing will be scheduled following their completion. The defendants remain on bond, pending sentencing."

        "United States Attorney Sheldon J. Sperling represented the government at today's hearings."     

Related stories:

6/3/2009    New Sheriff Named In McIntosh County

6/2/2009    McIntosh Co. Undersheriff Resigns

5/27/2009  McIntosh County Sheriff Steps Down

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