Federal Prosecutors Charge Former Winston County Deputy with Extorting Manufacturer of Methamphetamine
BIRMINGHAM—Federal prosecutors today charged a former Winston County sheriff’s deputy with using his police authority to extort a woman to cook methamphetamine, and with causing her to manufacture and distribute the drug at the home where she lived with a minor child, announced U.S. Attorney Joyce White Vance and FBI Special Agent in Charge Richard D. Schwein Jr.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office charged GRADY KEITH CONCORD, 42, of Lynn, with one count of extortion under color of official right, one count of manufacturing methamphetamine and one count of manufacturing and distributing methamphetamine on premises where children are present or reside. Concord has agreed to plead guilty to the charges. Prosecutors filed the three-count information and Concord’s plea agreement in U.S. District Court.
According to those documents, Concord was a deputy with the Winston County Sheriff’s Office in July 2013 when he approached a woman who lived in the town of Nauvoo and pressured her to manufacture methamphetamine for him. Concord was a methamphetamine user and arranged to supply the woman with pseudoephedrine, a necessary ingredient of the illegal drug, in exchange for a portion of the finished product.
Concord disputes the woman’s claim that he threatened her with an arrest warrant unless she agreed to the arrangement, but he concedes that because he was a sheriff’s deputy, she may have felt that she “had no choice but to accept his offer,” his plea agreement states.
On several occasions between July 2013 through June 2014, Concord delivered pseudoephedrine to the woman’s home, where she manufactured the methamphetamine, and where he picked up the illegal drug, according to his plea agreement. Concord obtained decongestant pills containing pseudoephedrine from the sheriff’s office evidence room, and he and his wife both bought the pills, the plea agreement states.
Concord knew the woman had two sons who lived with her, and that one of them was a minor, according to the plea agreement.
He faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine on the extortion count and a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine on the count of manufacturing methamphetamine. Any sentence imposed for the manufacture of methamphetamine where minors reside or are present must be served consecutively to any other sentence imposed. The maximum penalty for that count is 20 years in prison and a $2 million fine.
As part of Concord’s plea agreement, he must surrender all law enforcement certifications and not seek future employment in law enforcement or custodial oversight, including as a correctional or probation officer or bail bondsman.
The FBI, State Bureau of Investigation, agents of the Lauderdale County Drug Task Force assigned to the FBI’s Safe Streets Task Force, and the Winston/Marion County District Attorney’s Office, in cooperation of the Winston County Sheriff’s Office and the Lynn Police Department investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Tamarra Matthews Johnson is prosecuting the case.