June 9, 2011
DENVER – Chris Turner, aka “Kit”, age 29, and William Warren, aka “Will”, age 35, both of Canon City, Colorado, were arrested without incident yesterday by Special Agents with the ATF and the Department of Justice’s Office of the Inspector General, U.S. Attorney John Walsh announced for selling Diversion Munitions Devices, also known as “flash bang” devices. Both will make their initial appearance in U.S. District Court in Denver at 2:00 p.m. this afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael Hegarty. At that hearing they will be advised of the charges pending against them and the related penalties associated with those charges. The grand jury indictment, which was sealed, was returned on June 7, 2011.
According to the indictment, Chris Turner was an employee with the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) in Florence, Colorado. Turner served on BOP’s Special Operations Response Team (SORT). Around August 2009, using his status as a SORT member, the defendant stole numerous flash bang devices from the Administrative Maximum (ADX) armory. In June or July of 2010 Allen and his associate, Warren, transferred some of the devices. In the indictment, both defendants were charged in count one with conspiracy to illegally transfer the flash bang device to an individual. Count two charges Turner with stealing the devices, which were worth over $1,000. Count three charges both defendants with selling the devices, and count four charges both defendants with possessing the devices.
If convicted, count one carries a penalty of not more than 5 years in federal prison and up to a $250,000 fine. Counts two and three carry a penalty of not more than 10 years in federal prison and up to a $250,000 fine. Count four carries a penalty of not more than 10 years in federal prison and up to a $10,000 fine.
“A trusted member of the Bureau of Prison’s elite Special Operations Response Team has violated the public trust by stealing these destructive devices and working with a friend to sell them for non-law enforcement purposes,” said U.S. Attorney John Walsh. “These devices help keep correctional officers and the prison population safe, and their theft potentially weakened that mission.”
Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General Special Agent in Charge Norman Lau stated that “The Office of the Inspector General is committed to ensuring that Department of Justice employees entrusted with responsibilities to safeguard our prisons adhere to the highest standards of conduct, and we will vigorously investigate and refer for prosecution any official who engages in this type of illegal conduct.”
This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and the U.S. Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General (DOJ OIG) with assistance from the Canon City Police Department.
The defendants are being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Mark Barrett.
The charges contained in the indictment are allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.