A former Drexel University police officer turned himself into authorities July 13 after stealing items from a Drexel student during an on-campus drug bust.
Thirty-seven-year-old Che Brown from Upper Darby has been charged with taking $500 cash and two knives from a student whose room he searched last year.
The charges come from an incident on Jan. 14, 2015. Drexel police searched a student’s room at a university residence hall after receiving a tip-off. The police confiscated $500, two knives, a bag of white powder, cigarette rolling papers and marijuana.
After confiscation, the items were given to Brown for evidence placement and a property receipt write up. Brown allegedly did not log the $500 or the knives and did not put the items into evidence.
The student returned to collect the legal possessions that were confiscated, including the cash and the knives. However, they were missing from evidence, which alerted police to the theft.
A search of the evidence room by Brown’s supervisors revealed $500 in an ibuprofen box in addition to the two knives. However, the student was interviewed a second time, and the denominations of cash bills he described were not the same as those found in the evidence room.After further investigation, police viewed a video tape of the evidence room showing a video of Brown putting back what appeared to be an ibuprofen box and two knives into storage on Jan. 22, 2015. Brown admitted to the theft, but only after he was shown the video of himself replacing the evidence.“My bad, this is all on me,” Brown told his supervisor in reference to the theft.
Philadelphia District Attorney R. Seth Williams reported, “What former Officer Che Brown did was wrong. Stealing is stealing, no matter if it is $5, $50, or $500, and he will now have his day in court.”
A thorough investigation confirmed that Brown had tampered with evidence. As a result he was terminated by Drexel on Feb. 2 2015.
After Brown’s arrest, the Drexel University police department met with the District Attorney’s office to review training and procedures. Drexel University stated that its police, “will not tolerate behavior deviating from adhering to the highest standards of professional integrity.”
Brown was charged with theft by unlawful taking, receiving stolen property, obstructing administration of law and official oppression.