State investigators have seized computer hard drives, documents and files from the Pittsburg County Drug Court in connection with a probe into possibly missing money.
The News-Capital was able to confirm the seized items after investigators filed a search warrant return on Friday.
As part of the probe, investigators have also obtained a search warrant for text messages from the phone of Pittsburg County Assistant District Attorney Mike Miller, the News-Capital has learned.
The Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation obtained the search warrant for Miller’s text messages from U.S. Cellular’s main office in Illinois “to determine if our investigation has been obstructed or compromised,” according to an affidavit for a search warrant filed by the OSBI.
Meanwhile, the state Auditor and Inspector’s Office is also participating in the probe into Pittsburg County Drug Court.
Drug Court is a program that allows some drug offenders, who are screened and approved by a board, to avoid prison.
Community service is often involved and some participants may have to spend some time — for example, weekends, or certain nights — in the county jail.
Participants must also complete other tasks and pass periodic drug tests. Fees and other costs are involved.
The OSBI initiated the probe into the Pittsburg County Drug Court on May 11, according to the documents which were file-stamped on Friday. Associate District Judge James Bland signed a search warrant on May 17 after investigators became concerned about potential evidence in the Pittsburg County Drug Court probe becoming “lost.”
In the affidavit for the original search warrant, OSBI Agent John Jones said he had probable cause to believe the following property in the Pittsburg County Drug Court offices constituted evidence of a crime:
“Receipt books, payment receipts, drug court participant files, past and present. Computer hard drives and documents. Any and all documents in the possession of the drug court administrator.”
Angie Marcum is the administrator and coordinator for Pittsburg County Drug Court.
Investigators became interested in Assistant District Attorney Miller’s text messages following a May 11 meeting in District 18 District Attorney Jim Bob Miller’s offices, according to an affidavit for a search warrant signed by OSBI Agent Jones.
Marcum, the drug court coordinator, was reported out of town that day.
“Pittsburg County District Attorney Jim Bob Miller told me that Assistant District Attorney Mike Miller asked him why the OSBI was at the drug court office,” Jones said in an affidavit.
“(Jim Bob) Miller explained to Mike that there may be money missing from the drug court and the OSBI was investigating,” Jones said.
The OSBI agent said in the search warrant affidavit he was told that Marcum and Mike Miller appeared to be good friends.
Jones also said in the affidavit that sources told him that shortly after his conversation with Jim Bob Miller, Mike Miller was allegedly observed, “in the alley behind the courthouse, texting at a fast rate.”
“Due to the sensitivity of this investigation, I request the content of Mike Miller’s text messages to determine if our investigation has been obstructed or compromised,” Jones said in the request for a search warrant that was later signed by Judge Bland.
For more on this story, see Sunday's print edition of the McAlester News-Capital.
Contact James Beaty at firstname.lastname@example.org.