PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The former police chief of Elizabeth Borough was in court this morning.
A judge ruled Timothy Butler can remain free on bond pending trial, and he does not have to be under electronic monitoring.
Butler turned himself into police yesterday on several charges, including theft, obstruction and prohibited acts.
He’s accused of stealing thousands of stamp bags of heroin from the evidence room.
According to the criminal complaint, approximately 62 bundles and 2,700 loose stamp bags were found in Butler’s trash can. Additionally, officials say 535 loose stamp bags were found in and around his desk.
According to investigators, Butler admitted to having a heroin addiction, which he says started after taking Vicodin for neck and back pain.
He resigned a few days ago.
Defense attorney Charles LoPresti says Butler was a 20-year veteran with a clean record before he succumbed to heroin addiction.
“I think the judge absolutely coined it exactly, that opioid addiction can affect every walk of life, every race, every occupation, every social strata,” LoPresti said.
LoPresti says Butler is already being treated by a major health care provider and won’t have to go through the jail for an evaluation.
“Putting a former police officer through the jail so that he could come out to an in-patient treatment, which is unnecessary in this case because he’s already in intensive treatment, it places him in jeopardy,” LoPresti said.
According to his attorney, Butler is hoping to find a new job and a new career so he can support his wife and kids.
Butler has been ordered not to go near borough offices and is staying at home while awaiting trial.