UPDATE: GAULEY BRIDGE 'SPEED TRAP' COPS IN COURT - Officers Wrote Thousands Of Speeding Tickets, Gauley Bridge Population 600

(05/30/2015)

UPDATE - Gauley Bridge council members and mayor Bill Kincaid told media they knew little about the town's police officers who were brothers, in relationship to charges filed against them recently for fabricated citations.

Two brothers, Leonard Sean Whipkey and Heath Alan Whipkey, pleaded guilty to fabricating warning citations at a plea hearing in Fayette County Magistrate Court on Thursday.

The Whipkey brothers came to Gauley Bridge from WV's most infamous speed trap in the last decade - Summersville.

Sean Whipkey resigned as the police chief in 2012, and now Heath Whipkey has resigned.

In 2002, Gauley Bridge reported issuing 28 speeding convictions to the DMV for the entire year. That number rose to 268 the following year.

The Charleston Gazette reported in 2010 that in the previous three and a half years, Gauley Bridge police issued 5,057 speeding tickets — more than any other city or town in the state. The town’s population was 614.

In Summersville, where they previously worked, the two issued more than 12,000 speeding tickets from July 2000 to March 2003.

A former Gauley Bridge mayor told the Hur Herald the ticket writing was to keep the community safe.

= Gauley Bridge brothers admit faking traffic warnings

By Erin Beck for the Charleston Gazette

FAYETTEVILLE — Two brothers known for issuing speeding tickets in Gauley Bridge pleaded guilty to fabricating warning citations at a plea hearing in Fayette County Magistrate Court Thursday.

Leonard Sean Whipkey, 47, of Hico, and Heath Alan Whipkey, 42, of Summersville, are each charged with alteration of a public record and are now prohibited from police work. Sean Whipkey had resigned to work as a coal miner in 2012, but Heath Whipkey was still working as an officer.

The penalty for the misdemeanor crime is up to one year incarceration and a fine of up to $1,000.

Magistrate Leonard Bickford fined each $100 and placed the brothers on probation.

Heath Whipkey admitted to fabricating a warning citation to Ernie L. Stallings, forging Stallings’ signature, and pretending as if he had conducted a legitimate traffic stop, which he was paid overtime for as part of state funding for DUI patrols. Sean Whipkey admitted to the same act but forging the signature of a different driver, Claude B. Greene Jr.

The Gazette reported in October of 2012 that Gauley Bridge police had falsified driving under the influence warning citations, according to the State Auditor’s Office, but the audit didn’t list specific officers.

Ed Bibb, an assistant prosecutor from Raleigh County who worked on the case when the Fayette County prosecutor Carl Harris recused himself, and State Police Lt. E.E. Ashcraft, who investigated the case, both indicated that the investigation into the brothers’ actions on the police department is still ongoing.

“There are still some things going on,” Bibb said. “I really can’t comment any further ...

READ REST OF STORY:   Gauley Bridge brothers admit faking traffic warnings  By Erin Beck for the Charleston Gazette

See   GAULEY BRIDGE POLICE LIED ABOUT DUI'S - Speed Trap Town Being Investigated

SUMMERSVILLE $1.2 MILLION SPEED TRAP - They Just Don't Get It, It's Public Safety Business


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