PAW PAW (WWJ/AP) – A sheriff’s deputy in southwestern Michigan who authorities say stole a prescription pain reliever from a jail while on duty has pleaded guilty in the case.

Stephen Morris, 39, on Wednesday pleaded to two misdemeanor charges of larceny of more than $200 but less than $1,000. Morris is due back in Van Buren County Circuit Court on April 8, when he could be sentenced to serve up to two years in prison. In exchange for his plea, two counts of larceny in a building, each a four-year felony, were dropped.

In court, Morris admitted to stealing Tramadol from inmates on two separate occasions on Jan. 9 while he was on duty in the St. Joseph County Jail.

The case was handled by prosecutors from neighboring Cass County following a request by the state attorney general’s office. Assistant Prosecutor Kirk Metzger said they’ll ask that Morris no longer be able to work in law enforcement or as a corrections officer.

Morris is on administrative leave without pay.

TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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