MARTINSVILLE, Ind. — Martinsville’s former police chief was sentenced to probation after pleading guilty to official misconduct Friday.
The sentencing comes after Matt Long pleaded guilty to official misconduct in connection with an investigation into irregularities about sick days and pay.
CBS4 initially reported Long was arrested on theft and official misconduct charges after State police investigated allegations that he made adjustments to the sick days tracking system. He allegedly made the adjustments before submitting a pay voucher at the end of 2017 to be paid for sick days.
Long assumed the role of acting police chief in 2016 after Rick Lang stepped down from the position. According to court documents, Long used some of his sick bank hours in the two years before becoming acting chief. Court documents say Long would have had to use no sick hours during 2016 and only two hours duing 2017 to be eligible for paid sick days.
The theft charge was dismissed with prejudice as part of the plea deal for official misconduct. He was sentenced to 365 days, along with a $1 fine and $185 in court costs. The full sentence will be suspended to probation.
After serving 182 days of probation without violations the court will enter an alternative misdemeanor sentencing. This turns the charge into a misdemeanor.
Martinsville’s current chief, John Richards, said they received Long’s letter of resignation Friday.
Long faces civil lawsuit from state
While Long resolved the criminal case against him Friday, a civil lawsuit remains in progress. The lawsuit alleges the city lost a total of $14,514.12 due to Long’s actions.
The city has recovered $14,014.12 of its losses from insurance and bond coverage, for a loss of $500. They want Long to pay them back along with any profits he made as a result of the misappropriation of public funds.
Court documents show the state, for the benefit of the city, is entitled to the relief of three times the actual loss, court costs, and a reasonable attorney’s fee. The lawsuit is ongoing, with the latest entry being a status conference on April 21.