Former Highland Park Police OfficerSentenced To Prison For Taking A $10,000 Bribe
A former Highland Park police officer was sentenced to prison today for taking a $10,000 bribe and for conspiring with three other police officers to protect shipments of cocaine, U.S. Attorney Barbara L. McQuade announced today.
McQuade was joined in the announcement by FBI Special Agent in Charge Paul M. Abbate.
During a hearing today before U.S. District Judge Avern Cohn, Price Montgomery, 40, of Detroit, Michigan, was sentenced to 18 months in prison and two years of supervised release based on his plea of guilty to conspiring to accept bribes and to commit extortion. Montgomery, an officer with the Highland Park Police Department for two years, accepted a $10,000 bribe from a man he had arrested on gun charges in return for agreeing not to appear as a witness at the man=s November 2012 criminal trial. Montgomery accepted the bribe with his partner, former police officer Anthony Bynum. Montgomery and Bynum failed to appear at the trial, and the charges were dismissed. Later, Montgomery, Bynum, and two other Highland Park police officers accepted cash from an FBI informant in exchange for protecting a shipment that contained what the officers believed were four kilograms of cocaine. The officers used their police guns and badges to protect the shipment.
The sentencing of Montgomery completes the case against the four former Highland Park police officers. Defendant Craig Clayton was sentenced to 12 months in prison on June 27, 2013. Defendant Shawn Williams was sentenced to 15 months in prison on October 8, 2013. Defendant Bynum was sentenced to 18 months in prison on November 7, 2013.
United States Attorney McQuade said, “The court’s sentence today sends a strong message that public officials who use their positions of trust to personally profit will be punished. Police officers who take bribes and use their badges to make money will go to prison.”
"Government officials who breach the public trust for their own selfish purposes - regardless of who they are - will be pursued aggressively and brought to justice," said Paul M. Abbate, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Detroit Field Office. "Today's sentence sends another message that corrupt police officers who accept bribes and use their positions for personal financial gain will be punished."
The case was investigated by agents of the FBI. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys David A. Gardey.