A former police officer in Wichita, Kan., has pleaded guilty to operating an illegal gaming ring in the area.
This is the latest in a string of problems for the former officer. He has been charged and sued several times over the last two years for issues that include the shooting of a man and domestic battery and assault.
The Poker Investigation
Bruce Mackey was indicted in October 2017 on gambling violations for operating an illegal gambling ring. He is one of several members of the Wichita Police Department who was arrested. The ring traveled from location to location and involved several different forms of poker. Mackey pleaded guilty to outing an undercover officer to a member of the illegal ring, which nearly cost the officer his life when his cover was blown. Mackey also admitted that, while he was working for the police, he knew there was a large illegal poker ring operating in Wichita. He said not only did he not report it, he also admitted he received money from the operation.
The Domestic Violence Issues
The police department in the town of Goddard, Kan., which is outside of Wichita, was called to Mackey’s home on July 4. While the entire story isn’t clear, what is known is that Mackey was arrested for making a criminal threat and committing domestic battery. Mackey was charged with battering his wife and stepson, who is an adult, using parts of his body rather than a weapon. Although the injuries of both his wife and stepson were listed as minor, they were enough for charges to be filed. In addition, Mackey made a criminal threat against a female friend of his stepson. In total, Mackey is facing three felony charges of criminal threat and two charges of misdemeanor domestic battery. Mackey’s lawyer has stated the domestic violence issues stem from an enormous amount of stress related to the gambling charges and charges related to a police-involved shooting.
The Police-Involved Shooting
In addition to the charges for illegal gaming and domestic violence, Mackey is also facing a lawsuit brought by the wife of a man who was shot by Mackey in 2014. Michelle Richard is suing Mackey and other officers, as well as the city of Wichita, for $5 million after her husband, Stacy, was shot.
In 2014, Richard’s husband was bolted inside his house with a gun and was threatening suicide. She called her husband’s therapist, who then called the police because the therapist felt Stacy was in imminent danger. Five minutes after his therapist called, the door was broken down by Mackey and other officers. Stacy pointed his gun at the officers, but never fired on them. However, Stacy was hit 16 times.
Richard’s husband spent weeks in the hospital. While he finally recovered physically, according to her, he never recovered mentally. He lived in constant fear of the police. A few months after the shooting, Stacy hanged himself in the garage.
It appears that Mackey will go to jail on the gambling charges first. There are no trial dates set for the domestic violence charges or the Richard lawsuit. He is expected to appear in county court at the beginning of September. When Mackey is sentenced for his role in the gambling ring Oct 26, he could spend up to three years in federal prison and be fined $250,000. Other officers who have been charged in the illegal gaming ring are expected to begin the trial process by the spring of 2019. While police officers in Wichita are still investigating, the probe has so far netted six additional arrests of police officers.
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