Sheriff allegedly stole drug money to fund gambling problem

Does a sheriff in Ohio have a “compulsive” gambling addiction? One nameless critic says you can bet on it.

Pike County Sheriff Charles Reader was accused in an anonymous complaint last month of stealing cash seized during drug prosecutions to feed his gambling problem, the Cincinnati Enquirer reports.

“He is a compulsive gambler and never has any money,” the complaint filed on Nov. 9 to the Ohio Auditor’s Office alleges.

The forfeited funds were kept in a safe inside Reader’s office that only he could access, according to the complaint, which also accused the sheriff of borrowing thousands of dollars from two deputies only to blow it on gambling.

“Reader just does whatever he wants and no one ever calls him on it,” the complaint continued. “We are scared to death of him.”

Reader did not immediately return a message seeking comment Tuesday. But his attorney, James Boulger, told the Columbus Dispatch that the “main focus” of an upcoming auditor’s probe will be whether Reader stole money confiscated during drug arrests.

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