Wabash woman charged in connection to Wabash Police Department theft

Morgan Ritter

By Emma Rausch

A Wabash woman has been arrested in connection to a recent theft from the Wabash Police Department.

Morgan L. Ritter, 23, Wabash, was booked into the Wabash County Jail following a WPD investigation stemming from an April 18 incident.

On April 18, Detective John Krhin observed money missing from an envelope he had placed outside his office, according to the probable cause affidavit.

Krhin informed Drug Task Force Officers Ryan Baker and Matt Shrider of the missing money, the documents continued. Baker noted that there was money missing from a secondary envelope located in the mailroom, which was meant to collect funds to replace a local child’s trampoline, according to the affidavit.

“We then spoke with Chief (Matt) Bruss and Assistant Chief (Bob) Pilgrim,” Krhin wrote in the affidavit. “We all decided to place money, which was photocopied, into each envelope and see if it was messed with either during the week or over the next weekend. Baker and Shrider also set up surveillance cameras covering each envelope.”

On April 24, officers detained Ritter in connection with the missing money, which she denied any involvement, the court documents continued.

“After I arrived I interviewed her. Ritter continued to deny this,” Krhin said. “Shrider arrived and found the video showing Ritter taking money from each envelope. I showed her a snippet of one video and she finally began to admit what she had done.”

She advised officers she had been cleaning the WPD for three weeks and the weekend of April 16-17 was her first time cleaning on her own, during which time she took the money, the court documents continued.

Ritter informed officers she had also taken the envelope money on April 24 and already bought drugs with it, according to Krhin’s statement.

“Capt. (John) Burnsworth had told me that he found (Ritter) in her car going down East Street, just off of Erie Street, almost immediately after she had left the department and he had checked that the envelopes were empty,” Krhin said.

Ritter told officers she had purchased heroin with the funds, Krhin continued.

At one point, Ritter told officers she needed to use the restroom and Jail Officer Daleena Bailey escorted her to the restroom, according to the court documents.

“...when Ritter was done I heard Bailey telling her not to flush and saying she could see money in the toilet,” Krhin said. “Ritter was escorted out by Bailey and cuffed. I looked in the toilet and could see money folded up sitting in the urine water. … Ritter advised this money was some of the money taken from WPD this day.”

Ritter was charged with felony obstruction of justice and three counts of conversion.

Posted on 2016 May 03