OHP Captain under investigation for allegedly blackmailing DPS commissioner, others, in exchange for political appointment, promotion

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OKLAHOMA CITY - An Oklahoma Highway Patrol captain is under criminal investigation for allegedly blackmailing the department of public safety commissioner, threatening to expose alleged "improprieties" in the OHP, while seeking the commissioner's support for a political appointment or a promotion, according to newly filed court documents.

According to a search warrant affidavit filed Wednesday in Oklahoma County District Court, Capt. Troy German, 47, is accused of meeting with Oklahoma DPS Commissioner Billy "Rusty" Rhoades twice this past fall, during which German allegedly threatened to expose information regarding Rhoades, Chief of Patrol Michael Harrell and others, which could disgrace them.

Oklahoma Highway Patrol Capt. Troy German, left, congratulated by Department of Public Safety Commissioner Bill "Rusty" Rhoades, center, during a promotion ceremony on Tuesday, November 21, 2017. (Oklahoma Highway Patrol)

German, 47, who was promoted to captain in November 2017, most recently served with Troop D in McAlester.

The Department of Public Safety declined News 4's request for comment, citing the ongoing investigation, but a department spokesperson released a statement that said "Captain German has been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of that investigation.  The agency is confident the appropriate party or parties will be held accountable for their actions."

German has not been arrested or charged with a crime. Attempts to reach German for comment were unsuccessful, despite multiple attempts by phone, email and social media.

Oklahoma Department of Public Safety Commissioner Billy D. "Rusty" Rhoades, left, Oklahoma Highway Patrol Chief of Patrol Michael Harrell, center, and OHP Capt. Brian Orr, right. (KFOR/Oklahoma Department of Public Safety and Oklahoma Highway Patrol)

According to the search warrant affidavit filed for German's cell phone, Rhoades told investigators German said he had "subpoenable" information regarding improprieties in the OHP's promotional process involving Rhoades, Harrell and OHP Captain Brian Orr. The court documents do not detail the alleged "improprieties" German threatened to expose, or the veracity of those claims, but said the information, "whether true or false," could subject Rhoades and Harrell to ridicule, degrade or disgrace them.

Rhoades also told investigators German sought for Rhoades — using his authority as DPS commissioner and a governor's cabinet secretary — to assist German "by pledging his support for a political appointment at the state level" or assure him a promotion to OHP command staff with a rank of major.

Rhoades told investigators he met with German twice in the Oklahoma City metro area this past September. According to court documents, German met with Rhoades at the Charleston's Restaurant, 5608 W. Memorial Road, Oklahoma City, on September 11 and a Starbucks, 7305 SE 29th Street, Midwest City, On September 28. It was during the second meeting Rhoades said he was shown a document that contained language outlining a timeline for the promotion, which he gave back to German.

It's unclear when the investigation began, however a judge signed off on the warrant  for German's cell phone last week. The investigation is being done by the OHP's criminal investigations division, Troop Z.

Rhoades, a former OHP Major and field operations commander, was appointed DPS commissioner in November 2017 by Gov. Mary Fallin. He was reappointed to the position by Gov.-elect Kevin Stitt earlier this week, pending state senate approval.

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