Ex-Kettering detective pleads guilty to theft, drug charges

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Caption
Former Kettering Police Det. Ryan Meno pleaded guilty to a bill of information in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court that included multiple felony counts of theft in office and theft of drugs.

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

A former Kettering police detective will surrender his Ohio peace officer certification after pleading guilty Thursday to stealing prescription pills from a resident’s home and obstructing official business.

Ryan Meno, 37, could face up to 30 months in prison and some 90 days’ jail time after pleading guilty by bill of information to fourth-degree felony theft of drugs, fifth-degree felony theft in office and a count of second-degree misdemeanor obstructing official business.

Montgomery County Common Pleas Judge Mary Wiseman said Meno “will be forever disqualified from holding any public office, employment or position of trust in the state of Ohio.”

Wiseman also said that if Meno received community control, he would be on probation for the full five years. Meno, who was released on his own recognizance, will be sentenced Jan. 31 by Judge Gregory Singer. There is no agreement on a sentence.

“When somebody betrays that trust as a sworn officer it makes it difficult for the rest of us to do our jobs,”said Kettering police Chief Chris “Chip” Protsman. “But it also makes us look bad, and we know it makes us look bad.”

A press release from Montgomery County Prosecutor Mat Heck Jr. said that on Feb. 29, Meno responded to a 911 call about a possible break-in at an elderly resident’s home.

Meno determined that there was no break-in, but returned for a “follow-up” investigation and stole a bottle of prescription pain medicine. The victim reported the theft to Kettering police and identified Meno.

“Police officers take an oath to uphold the law and to protect citizens,” Heck said in a press release. “When they betray that oath and commit crimes, they will be prosecuted and held accountable.”

Defense attorney Steven Pierson and assistant prosecutor Ward Barrentine declined comment.

During the hearing, Barrentine said Meno obstructed justice in March by not cooperating with investigators. Some Kettering police officers were in attendance at Thursday’s hearing.

Meno, who resigned in July, had been with the Kettering police for 11 years and made $96,973 in 2015, according to the I-Team Salary Project. Meno won a prestigious departmental award in 2009 but had been on administrative leave before he resigned.

“I am disappointed by this event as are all the members of the Police Department who work very hard every day to protect and earn the trust of our citizens,” Protsman posted on the department’s Facebook page. “As I stated last May, when someone victimizes one of our citizens, we will do everything in our power to bring them to justice no matter who they are.”

Protsman said he didn’t know if Meno struggled with drug addiction.