Former Phoenix Cop Accused of Shakin' Down Drug Dealers Pleads Guilty to Theft Charge

Categories: Bad Cops
James Wren
A former Phoenix police officer accused of shakin' down drug dealers pled guilty to theft charges in a Maricopa County Superior Court this morning.

Former Officer James Wren pled guilty to solicitation to commit theft, which is a hell of a deal considering the crimes with which he'd initially been charged.

Initially, Wren was charged with theft, money laundering, armed robbery, kidnapping, and use of a wire or electronic communication in drug-related transactions. The penalties for those crimes can be pretty steep (just ask O.J. about kidnapping), so copping only to theft is a pretty sweet deal -- especially when you look at what Wren did. 

Wren got busted when the Avondale Police Department contacted the Phoenix PD to say one of its officers, Wren, 23, based out of the Maryvale Precinct (not the South Mountain Precinct -- we were shocked, too), was using traffic stops to steal money from drug dealers.

Avondale police got a tip from an informant who claimed he had conducted two "operations" with Wren where the informant led the officer to the cars of drug dealers after a deal had been made.

Wren, according to the informant, would then pull over the car and steal money.

In one instance, according to court documents acquired by New Times, Wren pulled over a drug dealer, stole his money, and then threw his car keys into the desert before releasing him.

On June 10, about 10 p.m., Wren stopped somebody he thought was a drug dealer who had $40,000 in the car in the 6300 block of West McDowell Road.

The alleged drug dealer was actually an undercover Phoenix police officer.

According to police, over the course of the traffic stop, Wren became suspicious and let the driver go.

Wren then drove to the Estrella Mountain Precinct Station where he was arrested by Phoenix police.

The arrest came after Phoenix cops made video and audio recordings of Wren and the Avondale informant discussing the previous thefts and arranging the one that ultimately led to his arrest.

Wren is on tape asking the informant details about the target of the heist, including whether the subject driving the car would be armed. He has since resigned from the department.

Wren will be sentenced on January 28, by Judge Michael Kemp.

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Phoenix cops see to get way with alot of things, They shot my brother in the back and when people watch it on the news it is so bizare that they followed hi on foot for quite some time and then decided to shoot him in the back. they say it was because my sister in law was a hostage which was just what they said so they could justify the shooting. They had no resson to thnk she was a hostage...The the way they handled it after wards was just cold. The cop Roberts that shot him wrote in his report nothing but bullshit. Well he has to live with the fact that he took someone's life someone's brother, son husband, very cold hearted ll i read is how crooked and no good many of them are that i dealt with Harris,Polombo make's e sick. I hope they get what is coing to them



Hey ... take a chill pill.

I'm not defending this guy, nor any other cop that does something illegal. There are bad people everywhere that are doing things illegal. That's why we have a judicial system, which cops are a part of.

Yeah, your going to get a bad cop here and there, because bad people are here and there ... and a few are going to make it to be cops.

But, over all, more than most professions ... cops are quality people doing a thankless job that people like you couldn't live without.


i think i could live well without their(cops) gratuitous efforts...


Phoenix P.D. currently, at times, provide off duty security to illegal poker rooms/gambling businesses which are operating daily throughout Phoenix. They also have been said to play poker in these illegal strip mall poker rooms. The owner of The Nuts Card Room on 4139 W. Bell rd #1 Phoenix, AZ, 85053, clearly states that usually 6 Phoenix officers assist with security frequently as noted on the Facebook page where he also violates the law by promoting his gambling business!!

CUSTOMER QUESTION:Jxxxxx Wxxxxxx How is the security there?, and what type of cash games do you run the most? No limit?, Limit? I usually play $1, $2 at Casino Arizona.November 2 at 7:24pm · View Feedback (1)Hide Feedback (1)

OWNER ANSWER: HXXXX GXXXXX We have off duty phoenix police officers (usually 6) on premisis every Wed, Fri, and Saturday nights. This coencides with our biggest nights of the week. Also, we have in-house security on an as-needed basis. We also walk any player out their car and take measures to ensure internally, cheating and other related matters are not happening. A CCTV system runs 24/7 and records all activity in the room. We run ?1/2 no limit and a Pot Limit Omaha game. We have also run a 2/5 no limit and have talked about running limit games. Bottom line - We will (and have the expertise) to run any game. If we have enough interest, we will run it.See More November 3 at 2:49am

Tell me Loosecannonsbluesband, do you approve of Phoenix P.D. providing private security to illegal poker rooms? Do you think it a good idea for police officers to play cards in illegal gambling businesses instead of enforcing the state laws?

The City of Phoenix also is aware of this yet support this illegal activity. It has been clearly stated by the AZ Department of Gaming that ALL of these strip mall poker rooms are in violation of state law, tribal gaming compacts and in the case of Phoenix... They also very much violate city code but yet they operate in violation of the law... Doesn't that mean Phoenix P.D. is violating the law as well as the mayor (who is aware of all of this) and city council are violating state law as well.... Of coarse it does. The City of Phoenix is violating state law by licensing these poker rooms not to mention they profit from them as well. HMMMM corruption sure does stink!!

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