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Sallisaw police chief admits taking petty cash, city official says

Sallisaw Police Chief Shaloa Edwards told city officials he took less than $100 in petty cash and is now under formal investigation.
by Andrew Knittle Published: January 23, 2013
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— The police chief of a small eastern Oklahoma town has confessed to taking less than $100 in city funds, although he told investigators he didn't see anything wrong with it.

Sallisaw Police Chief Shaloa Edwards is being investigated for leaving an IOU for $40 inside a petty cash drawer at the police station.

The chief also told investigators that he took money two other times, $20 in both instances.

A written statement by Sallisaw police Capt. Beau Gabbert indicates that Edwards was questioned last week.

Gabbert wrote that Edwards admitted to taking the money but that “he didn't think it was wrong.”

“He stated that had taken money on three occasions … once forty dollars and twice twenty dollars,” Gabbert wrote. “I asked him if he knew taking public funds was a crime and he stated that he didn't think of it that way.”

Edwards, an elected official in Sallisaw, is still on the job, City Manager Bill Baker said.

Baker said because Edwards is an elected official, he cannot be suspended or disciplined for violating a city policy.

“He works for the people,” Baker said.

According to documents released by Sallisaw city officials, a civilian employee working at the police station alerted authorities to the questionable petty cash withdrawals made by Edwards in November.

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by Andrew Knittle
Investigative Reporter
Andrew Knittle has covered state water issues, tribal concerns and major criminal proceedings during his career as an Oklahoma journalist. He has won reporting awards from the state's Associated Press bureau and prides himself on finding a real...
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