Ex-Windsor police chief manipulated reports, bartered rifle

Published 10:31 am Wednesday, March 11, 2015

The Tidewater News has obtained details about the recent case of Arlis “Vic” Reynolds, who was in court on March 2 for embezzlement-related charges. Among the details found in the “Stipulated Statement of Facts,” which is available from the Isle of Wight County Circuit Court, was the bartering of rifle and gun scope to pay rent.

Reynolds was the Windsor chief of police for about three years when he was suddenly fired in December 2013; town officials would not comment why. Following an investigation by the Virginia State Police, he was arrested in September 2014 on charges of embezzlement and obtaining money under false pretenses.

The defendant took a plea agreement, and the two charges went from being felonies to misdemeanors. After hearing testimony and Reynolds’ apology, the judge sentenced him to six months for each charge and suspended the time. In addition to paying a restitution of $3,815 to the Town of Windsor — the bulk of which has already been presented — he is required to serve 160 hours of supervised community service.

“Based on circumstances of the case, my client elected in his best interest to plead to a reduced charge and move on with his life and get this offense behind him,” said Jack Randall, attorney for Reynolds.

The “stipulated” document notes that the details represent “what the Commonwealth’s evidence would be, were this matter to be tried by the Court.”

For the first charge: During 2012-2014, the town police force had received two grants from the Division of Motor Vehicles, which enabled officers to work overtime for enforcing speed limits and DUI stops. A grant administrator was regularly required to submit paperwork to the DMV that documented dates, hours and personnel who benefitted from the grants. Further, those officers were to submit detailed timesheets to the town, which in turn paid the police; DMV later reimbursed the town.

At one point Reynolds took over the job as grant administrator, and claimed he worked 85 hours over 25 days in one cycle, then 24 hours over seven days in another period. He received $3,815 in compensation.

But a discrepancy was eventually found. Reynolds as administrator had to submit the town filings to DMV for reimbursement. Those reports “did not mirror what was claimed in the timesheets.” In his submissions, Reynolds claimed other officers worked the overtime hours. But he didn’t report to DMV any of his overtime submitted to the town.

The officers were interviewed and none recalled Reynolds working the selective enforcement overtime hours.

Dispatch duty logs were also checked, showing he worked only five days during the two grant periods. “Calls for service” records from Jan. 2-Dec. 27, 2013, were also reviewed, listing 10 traffic stops and only one DUI stop. Court summonses from May 29-Nov. 16, 2013, also were checked. “There is no evidence that the defendant was listed as the arresting officer on any warrants processed through the court during that time period.”

On the second charge: Sometime in July 2011, Reynolds reportedly spoke to his landlord, Dusty Gaskins, about having difficulty paying his $1,300 rent, so he offered to barter goods in exchange. Gaskins agreed and accepted an AR-15 rifle, that he valued at only around $850 to $900. Adding another $400 to the deal was an accompanying scope, an Aim Point Patrol Optic Sight, which was one of four bought by the town that same month. The scope has since been recovered and will go back to the police department.

Since the incident, Reynolds has been working as a stand-up comedian. In case you want to follow him, his Twitter account is @iloxmup.