Local News

'Tarnished Badge' Probe Claims 3 More Robeson Deputies

Posted March 27, 2007

— Three more former deputies, including a commander, face charges as a result of the federal "Operation Tarnished Badge" investigation of the Robeson County sheriff’s office.

Lawrence Patterson, who had been chief of detectives under Sheriff Kenneth Sealey, was arrested. Patterson resigned last year.

U.S. attorneys from Raleigh charged Patterson on Friday with conspiring to pirate satellite TV signals. They also charged former patrol deputies Lester Floyd and Herman Madden, bringing the arrest total to 14.

Federal paperwork says the three used satellite TV cards for receivers that had been changed so they could receive programming without the satellite company being paid.

A plea hearing for the three men is set for Friday in Raleigh before U.S. District Judge Terrence Boyle.

Operation Tarnished Badge began more than four years ago, and agents made it public last June. More serious charges against deputies included kidnapping and money laundering.

Many of the deputies charged were involved with drug enforcement, and District Attorney Johnson Britt said in February that he has dismissed between 200 and 300 drug cases because they were tainted.


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  • 07_Bama_Resi Mar 28, 2007

    If the kidnapping would have been such a big ordeal why wasn't that broadcasted instead of the pirated television systems. What did they do, kidnap someones dog for pissing on their tire?!

  • ltbarkley Mar 28, 2007

    .45 read what you quoted again. It did NOT say "..against THE deputies" it DID say "..against deputies". NOT unnecessarily these particular deputies. I hope that isn't all they are charged with. Thoughtcrime indeed....

  • superman Mar 28, 2007

    This makes about as much sense as the Cary police department installing 3 cameras in the catholic church christmas eve to catch the guy taking money out of the collection plate. The guy was about 70 and they arrested him christmas eve and took him to the slammer-- We all need to pray for the catholic church. They allow their priest to molest young children and arrest a guy for taking 20.00 out of the collection plate. What a waste of tax dollars to catch a couple guys stealing cable tv. I hope they were able to accomplish more than that.

  • ralwood Mar 28, 2007

    Get ready for the part III in this. It goes way beyond a local avenue.

  • e2brtus Mar 28, 2007

    wow! i sure am glad these dudes are off the street, i feel safer already! your tax dollars at work...the county is one of the poorest in the US and 4,count 'em years and no telling how many sunglass clad FBI,SBI,CBI.SII,KGB crime fighters work hard to bring JUSTICE to the great people of NC. I am SOOOOoooooo proud of our gun 'totin dudes and duddettes. i could ....i could...well, actually this story makes me want to upchuck.

  • .45 Mar 28, 2007

    "Operation Tarnished Badge began more than four years ago, and agents made it public last June. More serious charges against deputies included kidnapping and money laundering."

    Kidnapping sounds like hardcore crime to me.

  • yukonjohn3 Mar 27, 2007

    Legalize drugs now!! It will take ALL the Criminality out of it and the crime way over the entire country will lessen dramatically!!

  • 07_Bama_Resi Mar 27, 2007

    Way to go again Law. Are they doing drugs or sexually abusing people? From this article, no. WAY TO FIGHT HARD CORE CRIME :)