theadanews.com - Ada, Oklahoma

Local News

May 18, 2014

Pontotoc County deputy arrested

Ada — A Pontotoc County sheriff’s deputy was arrested Thursday, allegedly for not turning in evidence.

Sheriff John Christian said Deputy Tyler Mackey was arrested after he failed to log an item into evidence as required by law. The item, a part of an assault rifle, was confiscated by Mackey during an arrest in January. He kept it and used it to construct a gun, Christian said.

“In itself, it’s not considered a firearm, but it’s a part you add to and make a rifle out of it,” he said.

Christian said it came to his attention in March that Mackey had not entered the item into evidence.

“I talked to him about it and he didn’t hesitate. He said, ‘Yeah, I’ve got it. I just haven’t got it put in there. I will do it today,’” Christian said.

Christian said he trusted his deputy, who had an exemplary record and had been with the sheriff’s office since Christian took office.

“It was brought to my attention yesterday that the item was not brought into evidence and was possibly made into a rifle and he was carrying it on duty,” Christian said Friday.

Christian subsequently notified the district attorney’s office and the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation to investigate the matter.

“The result of that investigation last night was that Tyler Mackey was arrested for knowingly concealing stolen property and embezzlement and booked into the Pontotoc County Justice Center with a $5,000 bond," Christian said. "He has made bond and is no longer in jail.”

When contacted by The Ada News Friday, Mackey said he had no comment at this time.

Christian said a deputy carrying a gun would be perfectly legal had it not included a part that belonged in evidence. The fact that it was a gun was not the issue.

“The whole issue here is that was evidence,” Christian said. “It should have been placed in our evidence vault and procedure wasn’t followed. They know what they’re supposed to do. It’s laid out exactly what you do with evidence and that was not followed.”

Christian said when the court system is finished with evidence such as cars, firearms, etc., a judge will sometimes grant those items to the sheriff’s office. That was not the case here, he said.

“My understanding is he thought he could do this if it was for law enforcement use,” Christian said. “I think that was probably his justification for it.”

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