Two Chicago police officers are facing federal charges after being accused of using falsified search warrants to steal money and drugs and pay off confidential informants, WBBM-TV reported.
Sgt. Xavier Elizondo and Officer David Salgado were both charged with conspiracy to commit theft and embezzlement. Salgado was also charged with making a false statement to the FBI.
“Your service and the sacrifices you will make along the way for yourself and for your families will all be in vain if you do anything that violates those ideals and the star that you will wear on your chest,” Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson told a group of new police recruits. “Today’s charges and allegations undermine the sacred meaning of that star."
“Quite frankly, if substantiated, these allegations are a disgrace to what I and every member of the Chicago Police Department have dedicated our lives to and risk our lives for,” Johnson said, according to the Chicago Tribune.
According to the indictments, Elizondo and Salgado got confidential informants to provide false information to judges, which the two officers used to submit applications for search warrants.
The officers would reportedly use the warrants to seize drugs, cigarettes, and money from properties, allegedly kicking back a portion of the spoils to informants and keeping the rest for themselves. Sometimes they gave the informants money; other times it was PCP or marijuana.
Reports show that Elizondo and Salgado kept $4,200 in cash that they found during a search executed on a rental vehicle in January.
The officers are also accused of falsifying the police reports afterward to cover for the thefts.
Salgado is accused of lying to the FBI. The indictment said Elizondo found out they were under investigation and told Salgado to go home and remove incriminating property. Salgado told the FBI he didn't remember whether he had returned home during his shift.
Elizondo and Salgado oversaw a gang team on the west side of Chicago. They face up to 10 years in prison.