A former Pittsburgh police homicide detective who worked some of the city’s highest-profile murder investigations has been indicted by a grand jury and now faces nine criminal charges.
Margaret "Peg" Sherwood retired last June.
In May 2016, a grand jury began investigating allegations against her. In December 2017, a grand jury recommended that criminal charges be filed for alleged misconduct and behavior as a detective on the force. The criminal charges were filed Jan 26.
Channel 11’s Courtney Brennan uncovered the charges and has learned the allegations surround at least two homicide cases.
The grand jury highlighted three cases.
They first accused of Sherwood of writing a false report in the murder investigation of Rasheed Strader.
According to court paperwork, because of her discrepancies, the district attorney's office was not able to charge a second person in the homicide of Strader.
In the second case, the grand jury alleges that Sherwood wrote a false criminal complaint that resulted in the wrongful arrest of Corey Clark for the killing of Vincent Holt.
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The grand jury report says after Clark had his charges dropped and was released from jail, he was killed.
His homicide remains unsolved.
And the third case highlighted by the grand jury accuses Sherwood of trying to dismantle a domestic violence prosecution in order to protect one of her informants.
The indictment says Sherwood "relentlessly pressured" the Crafton Police Department to reduce or drop the charges against her informant despite audio recordings of the threats.
Pittsburgh's director of public safety, Wendell Hissrich, released this statement about the incident:
"The City of Pittsburgh holds all of its officers to the highest possible standards, and fully cooperated with the Attorney General's office on this investigation. Decisions regarding cases in which the detective was involved will be left to prosecutors and the courts."
Mike Manko, spokesman for Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala, released this statement:
"Approximately 18 months ago, our office came across certain information involving the work product of Ms. Sherwood that necessitated a referral from our office to the Office of The Attorney General. The charges that have resulted from that referral are serious and significant. Following the referral, any case in which Ms. Sherwood had an involvement has gone through a thorough review and vetting process. At this point, we have not found any concerns that would impact the integrity of any current or previous prosecution."
We're still waiting for a statement from the Pittsburgh police chief.
Cox Media Group