Image: City of Bossier City, Louisiana
On Sunday the FBI arrested a police union president in a Louisiana city for allegedly sourcing prescription opioid drugs on the criminal market, according to federal court records reviewed by Motherboard. The records also say the officer and an accomplice may have been embezzling money from a police union fundraiser account for personal use.
The investigation centers around Sergeant Harold “BJ” Sanders, president of Bossier City Police Local 645 International Union of Police Association. Local media outlets reported that federal agents executed a search warrant against the Bossier City Police headquarters and were specifically looking for police union documents.
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“On January 10, 2020, FBI Shreveport began investigation Mitchell Morehead and Harold W. Sanford, Jr., a.k.a. BJ Sanford after receiving several tips that they were embezzling money from the Bossier City Police Union fundraiser account. Specifically, it is alleged that Morehead and Sanford are running both real and fake fundraisers, from which they are taking money for personal use,” an affidavit written by FBI Special Agent Raquel Mobley reads.
In June, the FBI obtained a wiretap on Morehead’s phone. In a subsequent phone call, Morehead is heard saying “First thing I got to do Monday morning is go to Doctor Danzell and get the pills for fuckhead,” allegedly referring to Sanford, who the court documents say has an opioid addiction and that Morehead provides him with prescription pain pills. In the call, Morehead suggested he makes a profit off these transactions, saying “I mean [unintelligible] two hours of my time and I make a hundred dollars plus I make the three pills so that’s fine.” In a later text, Sanford indicated he would pay Morehead for the pills, writing “Yes I’ll probably come by today and just bring you 100.” The pair later discuss meeting up at a hotel to hand over the drugs.
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The court document then describes other transactions in July and August. In July the authorities conducted surveillance on the meeting and saw Sanford and Morehead together, the document says. In August, agents followed Morehead throughout the day and watched Sanford drop Morehead off at a doctor’s office, and intercepted a phone call in which the pair argued about how many pills Sanford ultimately received.
For each transaction, the DEA provided records that showed Morehead obtained a prescription for varying drugs and then fulfilled them at pharmacies.
Sanford’s lawyers declined to comment. Bossier City, the police department, the Department of Justice, and the police union did not respond to a request for comment.