Former Leadville police chief Michael Leake sentenced to probation for gun-running scheme
Leadville’s former police chief was sentenced to 15 years probation on Friday for stealing guns from the police department’s evidence room and pawning them in the Denver area, the District Attorney’s Office annonced in a news release.
Michael Robert Leake, 52, pleaded guilty to two felony counts for pawning the firearms from 2013 to 2015. Some of the guns he sold were bought by the city of Leadville and were intended for police use.
“Leake, despite his years as a police officer, was a sloppy criminal,” the news release said before outlining the former chief’s scheme, which involved him maintaining exclusive control of the police department’s evidence room.
In 2015, Leake deposited a $2,262 check made to look like a police purchase into his personal bank account. The city government noticed the oddity, and the DA’s Office started investigating Leake. During a search of his apartment, investigators found multiple city-owned weapons and pawn shop receipts.
“Leake’s actions constitute a major breach of trust within our small mountain community,” 5th Judicial District Attorney Bruce Brown said in a statement. “And for what, a few dollars? The cost that continues to be experienced as we rebuild public trust is incalculable.”
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Leake pleaded guilty to class-four felony theft and providing false information to a pawnbroker, a class-six felony. The DA’s Office recommended Leake serve four years in prison, but Lake County Judge Charles Greenacre sentenced him to probation.
Leake was also ordered to pay $25,000 in restitution to the city of Leadville, perform 200 hours of community service and serve 90 days in jail for each charge. The jail sentences will run concurrent with time he is currently serving in the Arapahoe County Jail his third impaired driving offense.
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