OFF THE WIRE
A DEA task force cop pleaded guilty Tuesday in Detroit federal court to leaking information about an FBI wiretap to the president of a local chapter of a motorcycle gang.
Randall Hutchinson, a former Hamtramck, Mi., police officer, on the DEA task force, admitted leaking the info to the former Downriver Chapter President of the Highwaymen Motorcycle Club during an FBI probe into that organization in 2005 and 2006, U.S. Attorney’s Office said.
“Disclosing a wiretap investigation not only violates the law, it also betrays an officer’s duty to the mission of seeking justice,” U.S. Attorney Barbara L. McQuade said in a statement. “We have no tolerance for that sort of betrayal.“
During the fall of 2005, while working as DEA task force officer, Hutchinson learned that the FBI was conducting a wiretap investigation that involved a large scale marijuana dealer who was a member of the Highwaymen Motorcycle Club, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.
Authorities said a short time later Hutchinson saw Phil McDonald, the Downriver Chapter President of the Highwaymen, in a gym they both worked out at.
Authorities alleged that Hutchinson told McDonald about the FBI’s investigation into the marijuana dealer within the Highwaymen and told McDonald that he had to be careful.
On June 19, 2006, Hutchinson and McDonald met again in the gym and Hutchinson stated that he had “been thinking” and that McDonald needed to see if his “phone was hot,” authorities said.
Hutchinson then concocted a plan to figure out if the FBI was tapping the phone, authorities said.