The charges against a former police chief for the Village of New Vienna that was indicted last week for allegedly misusing donations intended for the purchase of a police K-9 were detailed Thursday in a news release from Ohio Auditor of State Dave Yost’s office.
A Clinton County Grand Jury indicted Clinton Brown on Dec. 18 on a fourth-degree felony count of theft in office.
Brown convinced village officials in 2017 to let him purchase a police K-9 using donations for all related expenses. Between Jan. 21 and June 26, 2017, donors gave $14,020 to the New Vienna Police Department K9 Fund, an account that Brown set up in his name. He received the dog, named Paige, in March 2017, according to the news release.
At the request of New Vienna Mayor Kathi Stone, Yost’s Public Integrity Assurance Team conducted an investigation into Brown’s handling of the donated funds. During the investigation, Brown admitted to spending some of the money on personal expenses, such as clothing, food and gasoline, the news release said.
“It’s disheartening to see a member of law enforcement exploit a supportive community for personal gain,” Yost said. “I’m confident that justice will prevail once Mr. Brown has his day in court.”
Following Brown’s resignation in December 2017, the village learned of an outstanding $2,600 bill for a vehicle cage that Brown purchased for a K-9 police cruiser. The village owed an additional $700 to a company that provided K-9 handler training. In all, the financial losses to the village total $5,776, according to Yost’s office.
Brown was also indicted on two counts of deception to obtain a dangerous drug.
Of the “deception to obtain a dangerous drug” charges, Clinton County Prosecuting Attorney Richard W. “Rick” Moyer clarified that they allege “basically, doctor shopping.” In general, doctor shopping is thought of as seeing multiple treatment providers to obtain prescription medications illicitly.
All three charges are felony offenses of the fourth degree.
A bill of information filed in the case states the time frame for the alleged illegal activity was from Jan. 9, 2017 through Feb. 6, 2018.