The Williamsburg police police chief and a fellow officer purchased drugs in early 2007 from a former officer turned OxyContin trafficker, according to a federal court document.
Chief Denny Shelley and Officer Bradley A. Boyd later left the department in the face of possible administrative sanctions, but they were still employed when they allegedly bought drugs from Brad Nighbert, a former city patrolman.
Nighbert, 32, had left the department after crashing his police cruiser into a woman's car in April 2006. Lab tests showed he had oxycodone — the drug in OxyContin — and cocaine in his system at the time of the wreck. He later pleaded guilty in that case.
The latest indictment charges that Nighbert started selling drugs in December 2005 and that he burglarized a Williamsburg pharmacy in February 2006 and stole drugs while he was still a police officer.
The information about Shelley and Boyd was included in a plea agreement for Branden Ray Sutton, who pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court in London to conspiring to sell pills with Nighbert.
Sutton said Nighbert recruited him to deal drugs around April 2007. Nighbert supplied him 80-milligram OxyContin pills that he sold for $80 each, with $60 of that going to Nighbert, Sutton said.
During the time he sold OxyContin for Nighbert, he saw Nighbert sell pills at his residence to Shelley and Boyd, Sutton said.
That was the only detail about those former officers included in Sutton's plea deal.
Shelley was a Williamsburg officer from August 1990 to August 2007.
Williamsburg Mayor Roddy Harrison said Shelley failed a drug test and resigned after the two met to discuss the issue.
Boyd was a Williamsburg officer from April 1999 to August 2009. The current Williamsburg police chief, Wayne Bird, said that Boyd resigned after an allegation that Boyd was impaired while on duty.
Harrison said the city approved a policy of random drug tests for employees in March 2007.
The policy sent a clear message to employees and, more importantly, to residents that the city isn't going to tolerate drug use by employees, Harrison said.
"We have since moved forward,'' he said.
Sutton said in his plea deal that he sold drugs for Nighbert only for a few weeks, until Nighbert got arrested in Laurel County in May 2007.
In that case, investigators say Nighbert was caught with OxyContin pills, $32,000 in cash, a pistol and a police badge.
He pleaded guilty and served about eight months in jail, state records show.
Sutton said after Nighbert got arrested in 2007, he started selling drugs for Michael S. Ball, a man allegedly involved with Nighbert.
Sutton said he went to Detroit six or seven times to buy OxyContin, bringing back a total of 1,500 to 2,000 pills.
A federal grand jury indicted Nighbert, Sutton and five others in late March on charges of conspiring to sell drugs between December 2005 and May 2007.
The drug ring brought in a total of 10,000 OxyContin pills, Sutton's plea deal said.
Those charged face up to 20 years in prison.