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Former Pima County deputy chief Radtke changes plea, will be sentenced Friday

Posted at 12:25 PM, Feb 07, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-07 20:36:44-05
A change in plea by the former chief deputy of the Pima County Sheriff's Department. Chris Radtke is accused of mis-using federal racketeering funds that should only be used to fight crime -- totaling about half a million dollars.   
 
Radtke attorney's filed a notice stating "a change of plea and sentencing hearing" is scheduled Friday morning.
 
In October, Ratke walked into federal court for his first appearance where he had pleaded *not guilty.
 
This follows an FBI investigation that began over a year ago after whistleblowers came forward with claims that RICO money bankrolled items not permitted by law, such as a remodeled café in the sheriff's department.
 
And those whistleblowers came to KGUN9 in October and revealed the alleged mis-use of money also extended to the annual awards banquets.
 
Weeks later, a grand jury indicted Radtke on charges of conspiracy to commit money laundering and theft of public funds.
 
According to the indictment, RICO funds were moved to the Sheriff's Auxillary Volunteers -- or SAV -- account. Radtke and others made it appear that RICO money was being used by the SAV. But instead, SAV checks and a credit card were to pay for items not permitted by law.
 
Radtke's trial has been scheduled for March and his defense attorney filed a notice weeks ago that he intended to argue Radtke was just following orders. 
 
This update brings up new questions: Is there a plea deal? Could Radtke be required to admit guilt? Were charges against him reduced?
 
We'll find out Friday at the hearing in federal court.