INDIANAPOLIS - Two former Marion County Sheriff's Department employees found themselves on the wrong side of the law Tuesday afternoon when they headed to court to face forgery charges.
Those employees were fired in August, but the investigation reveals this case was a family affair.
Daryl Wise, 22, had been a deputy in the jail division since January. He faces 29 counts of forgery.
His wife, 21-year-old Ericka Wise, worked as a civilian in the jail records division since 2009. She is charged with 14 counts.
Her husband's father, 50-year-old Darrell Wise, faces five counts of forgery.
The trio was snared in a four-month investigation. They allegedly used counterfeit bills of sale and counterfeit documents to avoid registering vehicles with the Bureau of Motor Vehicles, or paying sale tax.
Police said they also altered odometers.
"The investigation is on-going. As far as the number of people that were scammed, that is something else we are looking at," said Deputy Prosecutor Mary Hutchinson. "Investigators are still working on figures to get the total amount of restitution that will be due."
Sixty-seven handwritten receipts were made out to Daryl Wise and his immediate family members.
In court documents, he said he did it so they could avoid paying sales tax.
The attorney for his father denied any wrongdoing by his client.
"My client is a grownup; he is responsible for the things that he does. He'll take responsibility if he pushed an envelope, or if he broke a law. He'll take responsibility," said attorney Dan Moore. "He didn't break a law and ultimately will be vindicated."
All three defendants are free on $7,500 bond. They are set for a jury trial on Dec. 17.