Mar 7, 2013

What do cops do with the money they confiscate?

What happens to money confiscated by police from drug dealers or other criminals? Does that money stay with the police, go to charity, go to the general fund or what? Kathy from Sandusky.

The money retrieved basically gets spent two ways:

• First, and primarily, for payment toward agencies spending money to investigate a case. Investigations aren't cheap and often times require several organizations needed to solve one.

• Second, and if there's even money left over, funds get parlayed into programs 

Erie County Sheriff Paul Sigsworth and Sandusky assistant police chief John Orzech provided the following answers:

Sigsworth: Confiscated money is logged and retained as evidence. A court order is then obtained once the case is concluded that addresses the disposition of the money. If the money is ordered forfeited to the law enforcement agency that seized it, the funds can be used for certain law enforcement purposes only (such as) equipment purchases and tuition fees for training. The expenditure of the forfeited funds is regulated not only by court order but also by the policies of the county and/or state auditor's offices.

Orzech: The money that is confiscated in drug and criminal investigations is held, pending the disposition of the case. There is occasion that investigations are multi-faceted with federal agencies, in which the money is dispersed accordingly to each agency and their involvement in the case. The money that is forfeited is explicit on its use. The confiscated money is used for other narcotics investigations, such as for training; education programs; materials; and equipment purchased primarily for these types of investigations.


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They buy donuts of course!


Don't ask me to vote for your levy. You've got drug profits to pay for your fancy Chargers and Escalades.


Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Libel and defamation.


Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Libel and defamation.

BULLISDEEP's picture

Overtime till.

Good 2 B Me

Pocket it


1 for you...2 for me!


Not all cops are dirty.


I completely understand the seizure of the money. I personally would rather see the cops using this money solely for beneficial local programs. Boys and Girls Club's, YMCA, even Toys for Tots and other programs that many of the officers participate in. The money should not shore up their budgets. But people around here can barely keep their checkbooks balanced, let alone do it when it isn't their own money.

Hoss McGee

They sure don't buy Girl Scout Cookeies!

The Hamburglar

They do, but not from Girl Scouts.


They buy Sweet Rolls.


"Confiscated money is logged and retained as evidence."

"The money that is confiscated in drug and criminal investigations is held, pending the disposition of the case."

Where is the money held? In somebody's pocket? I like the first response better about having it "logged and retained" as evidence. That way there is a record of it.

Don't be like this idiot cop who confiscated some marijuana and took it home to enjoy in brownies. That dirty cop was never charged. Even with the Vicodin that he admitted taking.

(Your submission has triggered the spam filter and will not be accepted.)
"Funny 911 call about a cop who steals marijuana, takes it home and bakes brownies with it then calls 911 for reasons explained in the video. This video includes a Fox News report about the incident and the full audio of the 911 call."


Huron County should be doing ok then.

Really are you ...

Ok that is how the money is taken care of. What happens to the drugs? After the court has concluded the case, how are the drugs gotten rid of? Dispersed bewteen the agencies involved? Controlled burn? When I smoke a cigerette, that is a controlled burn. Controlled burn, somewhere in the middle of nowhere, a big pile of illegal drugs is set ablaze. Someone has to be there to monitor the burn to make sure it is completely destroyed. Bet this person won't pass a drug screen. They need to sell the marijuna to states that have legalized it. bring the money back and put it toward some of these school levies. Just sayin'.

Julie R.

"The expenditure of the forfeited funds is regulated not only by court order but also by the policies of the county and/or state auditor's offices."

I personally wouldn't put too much stock in any of those offices. The state auditor was "questioning" discrepancies in the county auditor's office starting all the way back to when Hammond was the auditor but obviously the state's only job was to "question" but not investigate. How about the thief in the Treasurer's office that was stealing for five or more years? The state and the county sure didn't catch that. How about the three million dollar Clerk of Court's account that Barb Johnson is getting the blame for ... the money that supposedly belongs to attorneys?

Stands to reason, if there was never anybody around to oversee what was going on in any of those offices, then there sure wasn't/isn't anybody around to oversee where confiscated money goes at the police department, either.

Julie R.

So if the money the cops confiscate from criminals is regulated by the county and state auditor's offices, does this also hold true for the sheriff's department pertaining to sheriff sales?

If so, they sure are worthless. I never saw either one of those offices question why the money from a scam court-ordered sheriff sale of property that took place in May 2007 was still sitting at the sheriff's department in 2011. Neither did I see Sheriff Lyons question it.


Google search John Shimp Sandusky County Prosecutor (no quotation marks for the five word Google search) and you will find ex-county prosecutor Shimp stole money from the county and also from clients and estates. Shimp got a very lenient sentence.

Here are a couple of newspaper links from the 1970s.

Julie R.

Does anybody really believe that the state auditor is regulating the money that the cops confisicate from drug dealers and other criminals? I don't believe it. I don't think any impartial party is regulating what goes on in Erie County or any other Ohio county for that matter.

As I recall, when the Erie County courts were still playing their games --- still sitting on the money from that scam sheriff sale of my deceased mother and stepfather's property and I couldn't get anywhere with the joke courts, Sheriff Lyons, the auditor Tom Paul, and the county commissioners, I contacted the state auditor's office. I contacted them only to ask if they do audits in Erie County why weren't they questioning why the Erie County Clerk of Court's was still sitting on the monies from a scam court-ordered sheriff sale that took place years earlier. (that was right before Barb Johnson returned from medical and discovered her employees had deposited the money into her account without a court order and she transferred it back to the sheriff's department) As I recall, the person I talked to said they had just done an audit in Erie County. If that was true, how did they miss that? Same way they missed the theft in the Treasurer's office and the shady $3 million dollar Clerk of Court's account that Johnson is getting the blame for? Same reason they only "questioned" discrepancies in the auditor's office all the way back to when Hammond was the auditor but never investigated the discrepancies?