Former New Vienna police chief pleads guilty to theft in office

By John Hamilton -

WILMINGTON — New Vienna’s former police chief has pled guilty to two charges.

Clinton Brown, 50, pled guilty to one count of theft in office and one of two charges of deception to obtain dangerous drugs charge — all felony 4 offenses — on Tuesday in Clinton County Common Pleas Court. The additional drug charge was dismissed.

As part of the plea agreement, Brown would be decertified as a law enforcement officer and would have to pay $5,776.07 in restitution.

Brown, who faces a maximum of three years in jail and a $10,000 fine, resigned in December 2017 after he admitted to misusing money raised through a GoFundMe account to purchase a K9 dog and to cover related expenses.

Between Jan. 21 and June 26, 2017, donors gave $14,020 to the New Vienna Police Department K9 Fund he set up in his name. According to the Ohio Auditor’s office, which conducted an investigation at Mayor Kathi Stone’s request, found the village financial losses were $5,776. This included a $2,600 bill for a vehicle cage for a K-9 police cruiser and $700 owed to a K-9 handler training company.

Of the “deception to obtain a dangerous drug” charges, last week the News Journal reported that 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.

Katie Wilkins, of the Prosecutor’s Office, told Judge Linton Lewis that Brown had gone to 17 different doctors “within days of each other” to obtain “extreme amounts” of the same drug — hydrocodone.

Sentencing will take place on Nov. 13.

By John Hamilton