INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) - Former Marion County Deputy Prosecutor David Wyser has agreed to enter a guilty plea to federal bribery charges.
The charging document alleges that on May 29, 2009, Wyser, 53, had a discussion with a defense attorney to seek modification or reduction of a prison sentence in exchange for campaign contribution.
The prisoner, Paula Willoughby, was serving a 110-year sentence for the plotted murder of her husband. But on an appeal, her sentence was reduced to 40 years for murder and 30 years for conspiracy.
The charging document says Wyser and the attorney talked about Wyser receiving campaign money from the prisoner's father if he approved a modification or reduction of the sentence. Under Indiana law, a prisoner cannot seek that reduction or modification of a sentence without the approval of the prosecutor's office.
"It doesn't matter who you are who you were," said Hogsett. "It doesn't matter who your friends were or what your politics may be if you violate the public's trust we will hold you accountable."
That same day, the prisoner's father wrote a $2,500 check to the Committee to Elect David Wyser, the charging document said. It was deposited on June 22, 2009. The following day, Wyser signed the agreement to modify Willoughby's sentence.
"Justice is not for sale," Hogsett said during the conference.
Formal charges were announced during a 1:30 p.m. Monday press conference, with U.S. Attorney Joseph Hogsett and the FBI.
Officials said in a press release federal bribery charges can result in up to 10 years incarceration and fines.
"For too long people have had reason to doubt their government," said Hogsett.
Hogsett said Wyser will plead guilty to the charges in exchange for his full cooperation with federal investigators.
Wyer's guilty plea must be accepted by a court and a change of plea hearing has not been scheduled as of Monday afternoon.
The charges stem from the state's first Public Integrity Working Group investigation in an effort to combat corruption and fraud by public officials.
Wyser was former Marion County Prosecutor Carl Brizzi's chief trial deputy from 2005-10. He was a candidate that ran for Hamilton County Prosecutor in 2007.
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