Shirley indicted by feds

He could face 30 years in prison, hefty fines

BRYAN CLARK Spirit Staff

CHARLES TOWN – Sheriff Robert “Bobby” Shirley was indicted by a federal grand jury Tuesday afternoon on charges related to the arrest of bank robber Mark Daniel Haines, the Associated Press reported Tuesday night.

Shirley has been charged with one count of deprivation of rights under color of law and with altering or falsifying records while he was under investigation, according to reports. He could face up to 30 years in prison and a $500,000 fine if convicted, according to a press release prosecutor William Ihlenfeld.

Robert Shirley

Shirley was indicted for deprivation of rights under color of law and altering or falsifying records.


Neither Shirley nor his lawyer Kevin Mills could be reached before press time, but Mills told the AP that Shirley plans to plead not guilty on both counts.

The indictments come on the heels of last week’s announcement that Shirley and 14 other unnamed police officers were being sued for violating Haines’ civil rights. The charges in the complaint include assault, battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Shirley has briefly responded to allegations that he and other law enforcement officers used excessive force when arresting Haines, though he has declined to answer any questions about the specific events of the arrest.

“Sheriff Shirley has a long, well-documented, and illustrious history of over 30 years of public service as a law enforcement officer and for the past 4 years as the Sheriff of Jefferson County,” states a press release from Mills.

Shirley offered a blanket denial of the allegations made by Haines and accused him of attempting to shift blame for the incident from Haines onto police officers.

Haines alleges that he was beaten by his arresting officers after he led them on a high-speed chase following a botched bank robbery in Ranson in December, 2010. Medical records show he had numerous injuries when he was examined after the arrest, including a broken nose, a broken sinus cavity and a broken eye socket.

Prior to the unveiling of the indictments, Mills declined to answer any specific questions about footage shot from the a dashboard camera in a police cruiser which recorded the arrest and Haines’ treatment by law enforcement officers. Shirley declined to speak with reporters at all, relying on his press release instead.

Haines’ attorney Harry Waddell acknowledged Haines’ criminal behavior but said that it did not excuse the actions of the police in this case.

“There are two separate issues here. One is Mr. Haines’ actions, which he has admitted to and which he is already paying the price for,” said Waddell, noting that Haines is currently serving a nearly 20-year sentence for bank robbery. “Just as he is not above the law, the police – and, in particular, Sheriff Shirley – aren’t above the law. He is making a denial of excessive force, but there is a video tape that demonstrates quite clearly that he was guilty of excessive force.”

Haines alleges he surrendered and was immediately cuffed after the chase ended, and that he was not resisting arrest when he was beaten by law enforcement officers. Shirley’s release denies this one claim specifically, saying that Haines “resisted arrest.”

Warning: The video below contains police footage that some may interpret as violent. Viewer discretion is advised.

The raw footage was obtained from Mark Daniel Haines’ attorney, Harry Waddell. It was recorded during an incident that is the subject of both civil and criminal proceedings surrounding the arrest. It has been edited for time.

None of the none of the law enforcement officers, other than Sheriff Robert “Bobby” Shirley, who are shown in the video have been criminally indicted or specifically named in the related civil rights lawsuit at the time of publication.

See the video here.

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19 Responses to Shirley indicted by feds

  1. When is his next court appearance?

  2. I dont believe that criminal..Someone is pay? ing him off! Why didnt he accuse before now? A little too close to election day ..how convenient. I know Bobby is a wonderful sheriff. I am a republican but voted for Bobby and will do so again. He has done and will continue to do so.

  3. Meant that Bobby has done a great job and will continue.

  4. A badge is not a right to dispense violence at a whim or beyond sworn legal duty or under the cloak of authority for protection of illegal and/or violent acts against anyone.

    • If a badge doesn’t mean they are above the law someone needs to tell law enforcement that. They do what ever they want with little to no regard for the public.They drive as fast as they can no matter what the circumstance.They can be going to get something to eat drive like maniacs.I know some people will say “they are trained to drive that fast”.I call BS on that one.Dale Earnhart is trained 100 times more then law enforcement but he has to obey the speed limit when on public streets…

  5. Bryan clark and the Spirit are doing an awesome job covering bobby’s issues the past couple of months. Apparently the journal is afraid to write its own article on Shirley. What is it going to take for the citizins of jeff co to wake up and realize that Shirley is a menace. He tampered with evidence in this case knowing the FBI was investigating – so what would he do in other cases – plant a handgun? He is a liability.

  6. To hard to tell from the video, who was swinging, but there appears to be one kick in there by the Sheriff. I know him and he is a neighbor, but it seems like something that needs to be looked into. What gets me is when you need a policeman you cannot find one, but here in this video is probably the entire two forces on the seen chasing one man. Was this really necessary for all people to respond? I agree with Fred above, a lot of the police do drive real fast for no reason, congregate at Kings Pizza or what not, but all in all they do a pretty good job.

  7. If it’s true that he falsified documents while under investigation, he should be arrested. But before that he should be beaten to a pulp by his arresting officers.

  8. Where did you see the video?

  9. Dont any of you know that if we continue to allow these damn criminals to keep breaking laws, robbing banks, stealing, etc..that there will be more n more murders and increased costs to us. These stupid criminals are the liabilities!! Not Bobby! Wake up. When haines was robbing the bank and fleeing..how would you have felt if he pulled a gun on you being in the bank or if he shot you or threatened you…huh.. An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth! Haines was resisting arrest when he was caught..was Bobby and the others suppose to pull him over and entice him outta the truck with a lollipop and say its okay mr haines take it andcome on for a ride in my cruiser?
    Does anyone know what its like for these cops and our military risking their lives for us everyday??? Most dont but I do! Haines was resisting and I dont think anyone realizes this…wake up and see the cops side. you wont know how they felt at that instant unless you were there.

    • Please don’t blur the actions recorded on this video with the hard work and the sacrifice given to us by our military.

    • Really, think for a moment. This is not about police officers or the military risking their lives. This is about officers of the State apprehending a handcuffed criminal. They have no right, either as American citizens or State officials, to harm another citizen outside of the scope of their duty. Once those handcuffs went on, this type of brutality had no place in our society. Furthermore, the police chief is THE individual whose oversight exists to protect from this type of abuse and set the goals and groundwork for his department. Shirley has failed to do just that.

      An eye for an eye has no place in American society. Your logic is faulty. This is America. A free country. Not a police state where people like Shirley can do as they please to American citizens. That is the exact type of activity and actions that the military individuals you so quickly cite fight against on a daily basis. The Feds should take his badge, Haines should win his suit, and Shirley should quietly fade into obscurity rather than continue to lead his department further down the rabbit hole…

  10. Kaz: So are you ok with Bobby falsifying documents during the FBI investigation also? Was he resisting arrest when he was laying on the ground handcuffed when Bobby stomped on his head? Bobby Shirley is a dishonest cop and everyone knows it. He personally contrived the false accusations in the park director debacle because an ex-girlfriend was upset with the director and assistant director. The community will be shocked at what comes out from the Federal Prosecuters during this trial.

  11. TO Kaz: Where you there when Hanes was arrested or shall I say beaten.. You clearly said the man was resisting arrest. You have inside information that the public isnt aware of? To the comment about the police speeding, they do it all the time past my house. From their station to the stop sign in front of my house is maybe half a block. Somehow they manage to get up to 70+ then sometimes come to a complete stop. As far as the bank robber is concerned. He should sue the Jefferson County and Ranson police department. I hope “Shirley” can continue to do a great job from behind BARS..

  12. what ever happened to “there are two sides” to every story? all wehave heardand seen are the bad guy’s , lets don’t jrejudge this situtation.

  13. Kaz u must be family or something cause Shirley is corrupt and it’s about time he got what he had coming to him karma

  14. LMFAO! Well well Bobby boy, isn’t amazing how those pesky cameras can bite ya! Looks like one came back to bite YOU in the ass for a change! Hmm suspect in custody more than enough personnel to handle the subject..if they were being non compliant,,,so why did ya have to plant yer foot on his head? Excessive force? Hard to falsify a video like you do the reports! What else did you cover up at that scene? Vicarious Liability! All I can say is it’s about time you got a taste of yer own medicine. You may be able to falsify reports on others in house and put a black mark on them for life but now you’ve stepped outside the box I would think, and got caught! Not taking up for the bad guys, just like to see one of the bad guys in uniform get their’s. You don’t deserve to wear that badge, you broke the public trust Bobby Boy. Would make my day to see you do federal time! It would serve you right!

  15. This Sheriff looks like the one that threatened me and said if he saw me do anything no matter what he would personally take care of me.
    I am 71 and was 70 at that time. I hadn’t done anything wrong and this was a terrifying thing for me. I had many years of help getting over PTS because I was attacked by a man in the 1980’s and due to this attack lost my spleen, broken ribs and almost died. This threat to me by the Sheriff left me scared, couldn’t sleep and my dreams of someone trying to kill me started after his threats. I debated if I should press charges against him but was thinking he might do something terrible to me.
    He should be put in jail and spend years behind bars to get his thoughts and actions back on track. He should never be able to wear the uniform that represents to protect us. and now he has lost our respect forever.

  16. any thief SHOULD be beaten. Because apparently nothing else works.

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