A Metro narcotics detective was arrested today for helping to smuggle cocaine into the city.
Ernest Cecil is accused of actively protecting a drug smuggling ring run by his nephew, Corey, for more than two years. United States Attorney Craig Morford says that in 2003, Cecil and another officer allegedly pretended to arrest the ring’s supplier so that his nephew could steal three kilograms of cocaine, which were then sold for more than 60-thousand dollars.
“Officer Cecil’s duty was to help protect our kids, to help protect our communities from the devastating impact of drugs. That’s why he’s given a badge, that’s why he’s given a gun. And what makes it so troubling is the facts as alleged in this indictment show that he took that badge and he took that gun and he assisted the very people that that he was sworn to go out and investigate and arrest.”
Metro Police began looking into Cecil’s activities after receiving a tip in 2004. Chief Ronal Serpas says the fifteen-year veteran was given a desk job with heavy supervision two years ago, as a result of the investigation.
Serpas says he’s not concerned the indictment will be a black mark on the police department.
“Our officers, when they became suspicious of another officer’s behavior, immediately reported it to their supervisors to continue the professionalism of our department. No, not at all. Not worried at all.”
The other officer involved in the cocaine theft was arrested in January and is currently awaiting trial. This fall, Cory Cecil pleaded guilty on unrelated cocaine charges.
If convicted, Ernest Cecil could face up to life in prison.