Oklahoma Watches and Warnings

Former officer accused of stealing drugs from department

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STILLWATER, Okla. - When a Stillwater police officer discovered seven pill bottles with different names in the patrol car he shared with Sgt. Tom McConaghy, it raised some red flags.

Captain Randy Dickerson confronted McConaghy.

"The answers I got at the time were certainly not enough to lead me to believe that there was no wrongdoing at the time," Dickerson said. "So based on that we decided we needed to investigate both internally and criminally."

Police said they believe McConaghy took several bottles of painkillers from the department's drug take back bin on May 25, although investigators aren't sure how he obtained a key to gain access to the drugs.

The OSBI took over the investigation and McConaghy faces charges for theft of a controlled dangerous substance.

"The officer that discovered it, his supervisor, me, we are all acquaintances and friends of Sgt. McConaghy," Dickerson said. "You have to do what's right and legal and lawful and go about it."

According to Dickerson, McConaghy has not been arrested yet because he is in another state receiving treatment.

However, thanks to a deal between the district attorney and McConaghy's attorney, as soon as he's released from treatment he will turn himself in.

"I've had two or three personal conversations with him outside of the internal investigation of the criminal proceedings just checking on him and how he was doing," Dickerson said. "Again, we all have personal stake in this also."

Police said this is the first time their drug take back program has resulted in drugs landing in the wrong hands.

If convicted, McConaghy could face up to 10 years in jail.

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