Former Jasper Police officer sentenced to prison for bribery

A federal judge today sentenced a former Jasper police officer to 15 months in prison for soliciting and accepting a $5,000 bribe while a member of the city police force, U.S. Attorney Joyce White Vance and FBI Acting Special Agent in Charge Robert E. Haley III announced.{}U.S. District Judge Abdul K. Kallon ordered Scottie DeWayne Wilkins, 30, of Winston County, to report to prison Jan. 7.{} Wilkins must serve one year of supervised release after he completes his prison term.{}Wilkins pleaded guilty in June to one bribery count charging him with soliciting and accepting a bribe on Sept. 22, 2011, from an individual who had a probation matter pending in state court. Wilkins took the bribe "intending to be influenced and rewarded in connection with using his position as a police officer with the City of Jasper, Alabama, Police Department to provide assistance" to the individual on his probation matter, according to the charge.{}Wilkins agreed to forfeit $5,000 and a diamond ring he bought on Sept. 22. {}"Most police officers work hard every day to protect the citizens and the communities they serve," Vance said. "On the occasion that an officer does violate his oath and the law, we will vigorously pursue prosecution because the citizens of this district are entitled to trust law enforcement," she said.{}The FBI investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Henry Cornelius prosecuted it.{}