MERCER COUNTY, Ohio (WANE) — A now-retired Celina Police officer has been indicted by a grand jury on allegations he used a police database to reportedly dig into his estranged wife’s friends.
Mark Burgoon, 50, is accused of improperly using the Law Enforcement Automated Data System (LEADS) for something other than law enforcement, which is a 5th Degree felony in Ohio.
According to the Mercer County Sheriff’s Office, Burgoon used LEADS “to identify a person who he believed was a friend of his wife.”
Burgoon’s wife first contacted the sheriff’s office in November 2021 and said she was being harassed by him. They were separated at the time, the sheriff’s office explained.
The sheriff’s office said both husband and wife made “many allegations” against one another, and there were “many unwanted verbal and electronic communications” between the two.
One allegation: Burgoon was reportedly using a law enforcement database to identify people that were friends with his wife.
Investigators found that on Aug. 3, 2021, Burgoon “improperly used the Law Enforcement Automated Data System (LEADS) to identify a person who he believed was a friend of his wife.”
LEADS is the database law enforcement officers use to check driving records, identify owners of vehicles from license plates, run a criminal history on a person and many other law enforcement functions, the sheriff’s office explained.
After the discovery, the sheriff’s office notified the mayor of Celina, the city’s Safety Service Director, and the Police Chief. The city and the police department cooperated fully with the investigation, the sheriff’s office said.
A Mercer County grand jury returned an indictment against Burgoon on Thursday. He’s due to appear in Mercer County Common Pleas Court on June 28.
The sheriff’s office said other misdemeanor charges are being reviewed by the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office and the investigation was ongoing.