UPDATE: Trial ends for former Harrison County Sheriff’s deputy accused of falsifying documents, found guilty on 18 of 28 counts

Crime
UPDATE (8/22/19 4:17 p.m.):

CLARKSBURG, W.Va. – The trial of a former Harrison County deputy accused of falsifying documents during his time with the SCAD unit ended with him being found guilty on 18 separate counts.

Following closing statements on Thursday, the jury deliberated for three hours and 20 minutes before reaching their verdict. Rock was facing 27 counts of falsifying accounts and one count of conspiracy to commit a felony. A jury found Rock guilty on 17 counts of falsifying accounts and one count of conspiracy to commit felony.

Post trial motions will have to be submitted by September 6 and the response will have to be submitted by September 20.

Rock’s sentencing has been scheduled for October 16 at 9 a.m. and his bond is set to stay the same as his conviction bond.

UPDATE (8/21/19 4:05 p.m.):

The trial of a former Harrison County deputy accused of falsifying documents while working for the SCAD office continued Wednesday.

The first person to take the stand was an investigator with the Greater Harrison Drug Task Force, whose name was not given. He said the results of his investigation showed two vouchers were tampered or falsified by Rock and Snyder, and that another former SCAD employee, Zack Hudson, knew about it.

The investigator then went through every voucher in evidence and showed some which had white outs and different ink colors, and said Rock confirmed the signatures on the vouchers were his, despite the defense stating the investigator is not an expert in that field. He also stated Hudson has not been charged and is still employed at the sheriff’s department.

When asked by the prosecution how many vouchers were submitted in 2016, the investigator said there were more than 150, 27 of which are in question. The prosecution then explained that the informants are drug users who are willing to testify in court.

The investigator told the defense that informants are equipped with audio and video and that there is a protocol when dealing with them.

The prosecution then called Lieutenant Robert Waybright, who worked with the Harrison County Sheriff’s Department for 16 years and was made head of internal affairs and named evidence custodian when Sheriff Matheny took over, to the stand.

Waybright said he was the one who looked at the vouchers and checked with the evidence room to make sure everything was coordinated.

The defense confirmed with Waybright that he was no longer the evidence custodian, and asked where the evidence was stored. Waybright said that the SCAD evidence was stored separately from the other evidence, and it was common procedure to do so.

He also told the defense that SCAD did not have its own evidence custodian, and Matheny consolidated all evidence into one location with a single custodian.

The next person called to the stand was a male ex-drug user and former informant for Rock who used to live in Harrison County.

The male informant said he met Rock and became an informant and stated he used to buy heroin from dealers in the area. The prosecution showed him a voucher which supposedly paid him $80, but he denied he was ever paid, but was instead given some of the heroin from the purchase.

The male informant said Rock told him to never mention being paid in drugs because he didn’t want to have to lie in court. He also said that no other SCAD officer provided him with heroin.

The defense then asked the male informant about his past and drug addiction, as well as his felonies. He also admitted to signing many blank vouchers.

The prosecution then asked the male informant if he knew who was in charge and he said he thought Rock was in charge of the controlled buys, and ultimately the entire SCAD Unit and that he signed blank vouchers from Rock.

A female informant who moved to Harrison County in 2016, then took the stand. She said she worked as a waitress at Minard’s when Rock approached her, saying he had some information on her.

The woman became an informant after that, and said she believed Rock was in charge of the buys and the SCAD unit. She said that she had been paid in heroin, and when she made a buy, Rock said he wouldn’t say anything if one or two heroin stamps were missing.

Like the male informant, she also signed blank vouchers for Rock, and verified the signatures on the vouchers were not hers when they were shown to the jury. There was a voucher shown which said she was paid $150, and she denied it happening, saying on that occasion that Rock had called her and left something on her mom’s porch, which turned out to contain heroin in a Mentos container.

When asked by the defense if the signatures on the vouchers were hers, the female informant said that they were. The defense also asked asked if she was upset that the male informant turned her into the sheriff’s department, and she said she was.

The state then called Gary Spitznogle, a task force and former SCAD officer, to the stand. Spitznogle was a member of the SCAD unit from 2013 until the unit’s closure in 2017.

He said Rock had the most experience and was in charge of handling the informants. Spitznogle also said when Rock came back tot he unit for a third time, the unit split into an overt and covert side, with Rock taking charge of the covert side because he had the most experience in that field.

When he was asked why Rock quit, Spitznogle said Rock and Sgt. Cory Heater got into an arguments, wherein Heater said “if you don’t like it, you can quit,” at which point Rock left both the SCAD and the sheriff’s department.

The trial was then went to break.

Following the break, former SCAD member Zack Hudson testified. Hudson said Rock came into the unit and basically took over as a supervisor. Hudson also said that he never saw Rock filling out paperwork and said Rock was way behind on vouchers. Hudson said he left the SCAD Unit in August 2016 because he didn’t feel safe.

The defense then asked if Hudson was responsible for turning in vouchers, to which he said no. The defense then had rock go through vouchers and explain why some of them looked changed. Hudson stated that some might be clerical errors that had to be changed.

The trial then went to on afternoon break.

Following the afternoon break, Steven Snyder took the stand to testify. Snyder was a deputy for 7 years and was assigned to the SCAD Unit from 2014 – 2017. Snyder said that everything changed when Rock joined the unit.

Snyder stated that Chief McAtee said Rock was the best undercover agent. When the SCAD Unit split into the overt and covert units, Rock took all of the criminal informants and day-to-day was the only one dealing with the informants, according to Snyder.

Snyder stated that the SCAD Unit ran out of money from their safe because they were behind on vouchers. Synder also said that the unit had more buys set up than money available to purchase. Snyder said he and Hudson went with Rock to his house with the vouchers to change things to balance the books. He said he and Hudson would lay out their vouchers and while theirs added up, Rock’s didn’t.

The prosecution then asked Snyder if Rock had him alter or sign his vouchers, to which Snyder responded yes and that he took Rock’s word for it that it was what was supposed to be done. Snyder said that Rock was his superior and that he became very angry and violent. Snyder was also asked if Rock gave informants drugs. Snyder testified that Rock did give informants drugs and that after learning Rock did so, Snyder reported it to his superior. The two informants who testified earlier on Wednesday told Snyder that they received heroin from Rock, according to Snyder.

Snyder said that he was there on the day that Rock quit the SCAD Unit and that on that day Sgt. Heater started checking paperwork and CI info to make sure they were accurate. Additionally, Snyder said that on that day, Rock wanted to meet with him with paperwork and a criminal informant for a buy and that Snyder told Sgt Cory Heater, who was new at the time, about it and Heater said no. Snyder said Rock came back upset and that Heater explained that Rock had to get his paperwork done first. Rock said he didn’t like it and that after an argument, he quit.

The defense then began questioning Snyder. Snyder then testified that he entered a plea agreement that resulted in no jail time for him. Snyder also admitted that he signed signed 27 vouchers. When asked by the defense if that meant he essentially told 27 lies, Snyder agreed. The defense then stated that Snyder took an oath to tell the truth, but stated he violated that by lying, to which Snyder also agreed.

Snyder stated he wrote Rock’s name on the top of vouchers when balancing the books at Rock’s residence, but because they were Rock’s cases he did not actually sign the bottoms. Snyder said his name was on most of the vouchers from 2016 because that was when they went to Rock’s house to work on the vouchers. When asked why he insisted on testifying, Snyder stated he did so to tell the truth.

Cory Heater, who was a former SCAD member, then took the stand. Heater said the vouchers were supposed to be completed during the transaction and the supervisor was responsible for gathering them. However, Heater also stated that it wasn’t the responsibility of the supervisor to make sure the reports were correct because an officer signing his name is taken as and assumed as truth.

Heater testified that he left the unit and when he returned, the unit was split. Heater said everything was in a disarray and that equipment was not being kept up.

Heater also said that the CI log was missing many days, mostly from 2016, so he tried to clean up the process and make sure things were done correctly. Heater said a lot of people, including Snyder, came to him and complained things weren’t being done correctly. All these complaints revolved around Rock, according to Heater.

Heater said he immediately went to Chief Deputy McAtee and told him about the issues. Heater testified that he was told that an informant was paid with heroin. The two then met with Sheriff Morano, who told McAtee to meet with Rock. They met with Rock in the Village Square parking lot, and Heater said Rock denied the allegations and that was the end of that.

Heater stated he then had the whole unit come in for “housekeeping,” bringing in equipment and vehicles. Heater said he noticed vehicles were not being serviced and they began taking steps to clean stuff off. Heater said Rock disappeared, then came back and said he wouldn’t be micromanaged. That was when Rock quit, according to Heater.

The defense then asked Heater if SCAD was dissolved a month later, to which Heater responded yes. Heater then said Rock turned in vouchers, but never any reports.

The prosecution then asked Heater who he thought was in charge when he returned to the SCAD unit. Heater said Rock would have been in charge of Snyder.

Heater then said that the Sheriff called him in and said he didn’t think the SCAD Unit could recover from the “black eyes” and that he decided to shut it down.


ORIGINAL (8/20/19 5:20 p.m.):

CLARKSBURG, W.Va. – The trial for a former Harrison County Deputy who is accused of falsifying documents while working with the Harrison County Sheriff’s Office’s Street Crimes and Drug Unit (SCAD) in 2016 began on Tuesday.

Timothy Rock was indicted on 28 charges in February, including 27 counts of falsifying accounts and one count of conspiracy. Rock is accused of falsifying, altering and/or modifying documentation of various payments to confidential informants.

During the opening statements of Rock’s trial on Tuesday, the prosecution told the jury they would be hearing about controlled buys and confidential informants. The prosecution said these informants would be wired and go buy drugs with an officer nearby.

According to the prosecution, a voucher must be filled out with all controlled buys and they are using county/taxpayer money. The prosecution claimed the vouchers used by Rock were falsified and wouldn’t be filled out for long periods at a time. The prosecution also stated that deputies will testify about the lack of documentation on Rock’s vouchers.

The prosecution claimed that the drugs that were supposed to be seized by Rock did not exist. Additionally, the prosecution claimed that certain vouchers would say that money was given to informants, however there are informants who will testify that they received drugs, not money from Rock.

The prosecution also said that former SCAD Unit member Steven Snyder will testify that the whole SCAD unit changed once Rock joined. Snyder will also testify that people may never know where the money from the three falsified and changed vouchers because that was what Rock intended, according to the prosecution.

Following the the prosecution’s opening statement, the defense provided their opening statement, where they claimed the entire case is about the refusal to take responsibility. The defense claimed that Rock was the least-senior person in the SCAD unit and that he just followed everyone above him.

During their opening statement, the defense showed the jury a voucher.

The first witness was Chad McIntyre, who was assigned to the SCAD Unit in 2013. McIntyre said the unit often did controlled buys and said that money came from a safe which all SCAD employees had access to.

McIntyre said Rock managed informants and conducted several controlled buys himself and was in charge of the covert side of operations. Additionally, McIntyre stated that when he tried to balance the books, they didn’t add up. McIntyre also stated the the vouchers wouldn’t be there for weeks and that he would receive them in bunches.

The defense said that the Chief Deputy Jeff McAtee should be responsible for all paperwork and McIntyre agreed. The trial then went to break until Wednesday.

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