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Four more people linked to forged bond scheme

2 years 8 months 1 week ago Wednesday, February 01 2017 Feb 1, 2017 February 01, 2017 8:25 AM February 01, 2017 in News
Source: WBRZ

UPDATE: Additional arrests have been made in the month-long investigation into illegal bond activity, according to the Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff's Department.

TSD said Wednesday that four more people have been indentified and linked to the crime. Those people have been identified as Shawanda Dove of Independence, Bridgette Harper of Hammond, Ronald Berry of Hammond and Donald Bickham of Hammond.

TSD said that Berry, an inmate of the Tangipahoa Parish Jail, was freed on a $280,000 property surety bond in November. The investigation by the Tangipahoa Sheriff's Office revealed that Berry set up the illegal bond with several others.

According to TSD, Berry's girlfriend, Harper, and her brother, Bickham, sent the payment to Dove who received forged bond paperwork from another party. This led to his release from jail.

Harper and Dove have both been arrested. Police are still looking for Berry and Bickham.

TSD said their charges are conspirary for the illegal consideration of criminal bail bonds, conspiracy to commit forgery, false personation and injuring public records.

AMITE - In January, Six Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff's Office employees were arrested following a month-long investigation, according to Sheriff Daniel Edwards.

The investigation into three employees linked to illegal bond activity began on Dec. 27. According to Sheriff Edwards, over the course of the investigation, six employees were either terminated or placed on administrative leave.

Criminal records supervisor Sgt. Sonja Evans, Latecial Milton and Crystal Knight participated in the scheme. Racquelle Collins, Robert Smith and Kedrick Carlson were also arrested for their knowledge of the illegal activity.

Smith and Carlson were charged with one count of conspiracy for illegal consideration of criminal bail bonds. Collins was charged with one count of illegal consideration of illegal bail bonds.

Evans was charged with 15 counts including forgery, injuring public records and malfeasance in office. Evans resigned from TPSO Tuesday.

Knight was charged with 19 offenses, including forgery, injuring public records, malfeasance in office and illegal consideration of bail bonds. Knight was terminated from TPSO for unrelated reasons on Dec. 13.

Milton was charged with one count of malfeasance in office. Milton was on administrative leave but was terminated and is no longer employed by TPSO. 

Edwards said the investigation into the incident is still ongoing. Details about the case are limited at this time. More arrests are expected. 

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