Former police officer sentenced for weapon theft

By JAMES MITCHELL
Sunday Times Newspapers

TAYLOR — The theft of a department shotgun — once used by a fellow officer killed in the line of duty and discovered during a domestic violence investigation — ended with the July 12 sentencing of a former Taylor police officer to two years in prison.

Andrew Voelkner was sentenced by Wayne County Circuit Court Judge Margaret Van Houten after a jury in March found the former cop guilty of felony firearms possession and receiving and concealing a stolen firearm.

Voelkner had been charged in November 2012 with having stolen a department shotgun earlier in the year. Police Chief Mary Sclabassi said Voelkner was dismissed from the department in February after Farmington Hills police responded to a domestic disturbance report at his home.

During the investigation, police located a shotgun belonging to the Taylor Police Department, a weapon that had been retired from service having been previously issued to Cpl. Matthew Edwards, who was killed in the line of duty in July 2010.

Sclabassi confirmed during the investigation and trial that the weapon had not been assigned to Voelkner, nor did he have permission to take it from the department.

Voelkner was taken from the courthouse into custody and awaits placement in a state correctional facility.

(James Mitchell can be reached at jmitchell@bewickpublications.com.)

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