Last KCK police officer pleads guilty in sting case

The last of three suspended Kansas City, Kan., police officers who were charged with stealing while serving search warrants pleaded guilty today in federal court, but investigation might not be finished.

Jeffrey M. Bell, 34, pleaded guilty to the felony of conspiring to violate people’s rights by stealing electronics and money from them from January 2010 to Jan. 4, 2011, when the officers were caught in an FBI sting operation.

Two other officers, Darryl M. Forrest, 32, and Dustin Sillings, 34, pleaded guilty to the same charge on Tuesday.

Bell admitted to stealing at least four PlayStation games last year and to taking two Nintendo games and a computer docking cord during the sting.

Judge Kathryn Vratil told Bell that his lawyer interpreted the range of sentencing in his case to be from 18 to 24 months, but that would be determined later. The range for the other two officers was interpreted to be 18 to 33 months.

Vratil also told Bell that she could sentence him to more or less time than the guideline range.

All three officers also agreed to testify if called upon, suggesting that the investigation of the elite police unit the men served in might not be finished.

Barry Grissom, U.S. attorney for Kansas, said a grand jury is still sitting in the case.

Bell served on the police force for 7 years, Forrest for 8 years and Sillings for more than 10 years. Grissom said that the stealing might have gone on much longer, but authorities are limited to what they can prove.