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Former police lieutenant to serve jail time for trying to steal drugs

By: Sarah Moon, Andrew Fefer Email
By: Sarah Moon, Andrew Fefer Email

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WEAU) -- A former La Crosse police lieutenant who pleaded guilty to stealing drugs from the police department will spend time behind bars.

44-year-old Brian Thomson pleaded guilty back in December after an investigation showed he was stealing evidence.

Before his sentencing former Thomson said he needs to show the community and his family what he can do.

He also said he’s taken responsibility for what he did.

“I look at a monster at times in the mirror, and I wonder what happened. I’ve been sober and clean now, and I feel great. I reconnected, with my family, with my children who’ve got a father they didn’t have,” said Thomson.

On Tuesday, Thomson was sentenced to three months in jail, three months house arrest and three years probation.

Thomson’s attorney said Thomson has a lot of work to do.

“I was hoping that Brian wouldn’t spend any time in the actual jail. The sentence wasn’t a surprise though. I think frankly it was fair given the situation,” said Keith Belzer.

A criminal complaint said Thomson took fake pills out of a duffle bag in August, which he admitted to doing during an interview.

The criminal complaint also said Thomson admitted to removing drug evidence from the La Crosse Police Department at least three times before that.

Before Thomson was sentenced, prosecutors said he wasn’t initially forthcoming about the number of times he took drugs out the evidence room, but he was cooperative.

“All of those he should get credit for there’s no doubt about it, but again there is the bad character traits he has too. He lived a lie for years,” said Jeff Gabrysiak, WI Attorney General’s Office.

Captain Shawn Kudron with the La Crosse Police Department said those lies have allowed suspects to face reduced charges, because of missing evidence.

“The results of Thomson’s actions have been far reaching. La Crosse Police Department has had to reestablish trust with the community that we serve,” said Kudron.

After Thomson’s sentencing, the La Crosse Police Department issued a press release that said policies and on evidence packaging and storage have gotten stricter.

The release also said new equipment will help make evidence more secure and protect its integrity.

As a result of the sentence, Thomson won’t be allowed to possess a firearm or work as a police officer.

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LA CROSSE, Wis. (WEAU) --A former police lieutenant will serve nearly three months in jail for trying to steal drugs from the La Crosse Police Department.

On Tuesday, a judge handed down the sentence to Brian Thomson, 44, of Holmen. He was also sentenced to three years of extended supervision and three months of house arrest.

Thomson had pleaded guilty to attempted possession of narcotic drugs without a prescription. He admitted to stealing and using meth from the department at least three times last year. A report shows police found more than 60 packages of illegal drugs and prescription pills that may have been tampered with in the evidence room.

Watch for more on the sentencing hearing tonight on WEAU 13 News at Six.


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