Friday, February 12, 2010

Another crooked cop

An Oceanside police sergeant accused of accepting fraudulently purchased items to update his home pleaded guilty Wednesday to three counts of receiving stolen property, authorities said.

Walter McWilson, a 10-year veteran of the department, is scheduled to be sentenced on June 15, said Paul Levikow, a District Attorney’s Office spokesman.

McWilson appeared in Vista Superior Court.

Investigators said McWilson knowingly received $54,000 worth of items in 2006 and 2007 purchased by a Murrieta woman who was embezzling funds from the Oceanside-based construction company where she worked. Prosecutors said McWilson had a romantic relationship with the woman, an office manager for the company.

The items he received included mahogany wood flooring, Travertine tile, high-tech equipment for a home recording studio and flat-screen TVs. Authorities accused McWilson of selling one 50-inch plasma television to a neighbor and then pocketing $1,200 in cash.

McWilson, who was most recently a supervisor for the department’s Neighborhood Policing Team, was considered by his peers to be a rising star within the Police Department until he was put on administrative leave in August. He originally faced 14 felony charges of receiving stolen property, grand theft and conspiracy.

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