By Conrad Dudderar
EL RENO – A fired Canadian County sheriff’s deputy has received a deferred sentence for stealing money from jail inmates.
Moore’s Katie Denise Wade, 33, was convicted Jan. 25 of embezzlement of state property in Canadian County District Court.
She entered a guilty plea to the felony charge at a preliminary hearing before District Judge Khristan K. Strubhar.
Wade’s sentencing was deferred for one year and she was ordered to pay fines, court costs and related fees. The defendant agreed to pay $50 monthly starting March 17 with a cost administration review hearing set July 17, court minutes show.
A former detention officer at the Canadian County Jail, Wade lost her position after an investigation found she stole $570 in cash from two inmates.
Wade “received money to be placed in the inmate trust account, and knowingly made false entries in that account received on behalf of the county,” according to Assistant District Attorney Walter H. Mengden.
The defendant committed the crime in June and July 2022 “while acting in her capacity as a deputy for the Canadian County Sheriff’s Office,” the charging document reads.
Embezzlement of state property is punishable by one to 20 years in state prison and a $500 fine.
Canadian County Sheriff’s Sgt. Justin Brown conducted the internal investigation of missing/stolen money at Canadian County’s detention center, 304 N Evans.
Cpl. Wade confessed to stealing $500 in cash at about 12:35 a.m. June 21 from an envelope created by another detention officer during the booking process of inmate Daniel Joseph Snyder, according to a probable cause affidavit signed by Sgt. Brown.
Wade also confessed to stealing $70 in cash at around 2:18 a.m. July 30 from inmate Shannon Edward Wooten’s personal property tote at the booking desk inside the county jail, the affidavit shows.
SORRY IS NOT ENOUGH
During an interview with Sgt. Brown, Wade said she hadn’t spent the $570 and it was still in her bank account.
Wade returned all the stolen money and wrote an apology letter to the Canadian County Sheriff’s Office staff.
The text of the apology letter was included with the court filing.
In the letter, she wrote that she had “distrusted myself and the Sheriff’s Office” by taking “two amounts of money for the purpose of helping my kid better herself in cheerleading.”
Wade told fellow sheriff’s personnel that she loved her job at the jail, was willing to be demoted until she showed her “worth again” and asked for a “second chance” to “show this will never happen again!”, the court affidavit reads.
Wade was immediately fired after the sheriff’s office concluded its investigation and presented the criminal case to the Canadian County District Attorney’s Office, Undersheriff Kevin Ward said.
Her attorney is Darlene Carbitcher of Norman.