Police dispatcher sentenced for sharing investigation information with suspects

Police dispatcher sentenced for sharing investigation information with suspects

FREDRICKSBURG, Va. — A police dispatcher who shared sensitive investigation information with suspects was sentenced to two years in prison on Wednesday.

An informant told investigators in July 2019 that Karen Stephenson, a Fredricksburg police dispatcher, was sharing information about ongoing drug investigations with suspects, the Free Lance-Star reported.

The informant said she regularly bought prescription pills for Stephenson for many years, in exchange for pills for herself. She said she betrayed Stephenson as a way to reduce her own legal issues, the Star reported.

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Police confirmed Stephenson’s role by conducting a sting operation involving the informant. They also recovered evidence from her home near the police station.

Former co-workers worried their safety could have been compromised.

A Fredericksburg Circuit Court judge sentenced Stephenson to 17 years but suspended nearly 15 years of it, the Star reported. She was convicted in August of two felonies; conspiracy and possession of illegal drugs with the intent to distribute; as well as seven misdemeanors, the Star reported.