Hogsett Says His Office Is Targeting Public Corruption

U.S. Attorney Joe Hogsett sat down for an interview with the Star's Carrie Ritchie as the government prepares to prosecute its case against former high-ranking IMPD officer and a former City-County Councilor, Lincoln Plowman, on bribery and extortion charges. He issued a warning that his office has targeted public corruption:

"Any violation of public trust for personal financial gain will be identified, investigated and prosecuted by this office to the fullest extent of the law," Hogsett said. "My job is to make sure there's never a 'for sale' sign on any public official, ever."
The Plowman case predates Hogsett's tenure as U.S. Attorney. An undercover FBI sting nabbed Plowman accepting a $5,000 cash bribe in consideration for his assistance in helping an undercover agent posing as a Chicago businessman interested in gaining zoning approval for a downtown strip club the owner wanted to establish. Ritchie reports that multiple agents will testify at the trial, including two undercover agents who will be "given special protections to keep information about their jobs private." Plowman is represented by high profile criminal defense attorney James Voyles, a fact that has raised eyebrows. Some wonder how Plowman can afford his services. Plowman was auctioning off personal items on Craigslist at the time of his arrest.

I hope Hogsett means what he says about targeting public corruption. Some observers wondered if the FBI's investigation of local public corruption wasn't compromised when the details of the Plowman matter were leaked early on in the investigation, making it impossible to flip Plowman and use him to nab other unsuspecting persons. He is, after all, a rather small cog in the ring of public corruption taking place in state and local government. Plowman was in an ideal situation to aid the FBI given his high-ranking position in IMPD's investigations division and his leadership role on the City-County Council. This blog has detailed how Ryan Vaughn, the President of the Indianapolis City-County Council, has blatantly used his position to benefit his law firm and its clients involving far more money and having a far greater impact on public policy.