Pubdate: Wed, 23 May 2007
Source: Ledger-Enquirer (Columbus,GA)
Copyright: 2007 Ledger-Enquirer
Author: Alan Riquelmy, Staff Writer


Columbus Police Veteran Pleads Not Guilty, Given $10,000 Bond

A former nine-year veteran of the Columbus Police will remain free on
bond after his Tuesday appearance in U.S. District Court.

Cory Wilber stood in a suit and tie before U.S. Magistrate G. Mallon
Faircloth for his first appearance hearing. Charged with misprision of
felony, Wilber is accused of concealing knowledge of a felony.

"This is an unusual charge," Faircloth said. "There's no element of
violence. There's no element of possession or distribution of drugs."

Assistant U.S. Attorney Melvin Hyde Jr. told Faircloth that Wilber
attempted on Jan. 30, 2005, to steal money that was on its way to
Columbus from Albany. The money was intended to purchase marijuana.
After hearing from Hyde, Faircloth advised Wilber of his rights and
received his not guilty plea.

Wilber was indicted on the charge May 16. He turned in his badge and
gun and was fired from the police after his arrest. If convicted, he
would face three years in prison, a fine or both.

Defense attorney Frank Martin requested his client be allowed to
remain out on bond until the case's conclusion. Hyde gave no
objection, and Faircloth gave Wilber a $10,000 bond.

Wilber is the second Columbus Police officer to be fired after a
federal grand jury returned an indictment. Larry Lightning pleaded not
guilty in U.S. District Court April 23 following his April 19 indictment.

Lightning faces charges of conspiracy to possess crack cocaine with
intent to distribute, extortion by a public official and possession of
a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime. If convicted on
all charges, he could face life in prison.
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