Court Docs: Former Deputy had open arrest warrants for 10 years

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – A former Marion County Sheriff’s Deputy is out of jail on bond after he was arrested this week on an outstanding Marion County warrant. I-Team 8 discovered Arnold Rachel may have also evaded other active warrants for more than a decade while he was employed as a deputy.

Arnold Rachel, 56, is charged with a Class C Felony Count of Giving False Information on a Firearm Purchase Form.

According to court documents, Rachel attempted to buy a Colt .223 caliber assault rifle at Dock Brothers Pawn Shop on the near north side on January 17. But, his required federal background check was denied.

“We run everything through the [National Instant Check System],” Dock Brothers manager Noah Dock told I-Team 8. “Everything is done by the book. We fill out a background check form, call it in to the FBI, and the FBI lets us know what to do. That’s why we have this system, so the right people can have the right items and the wrong people can’t have those items. In this case, the system worked just like it’s supposed to.”

According to the probable cause affidavit, Rachel answered “no” on the form when asked if he was “a fugitive from justice.”

It wasn’t the first time.

Court documents show Rachel admitted to detectives that he also attempted to buy a gun at Don’s Guns on Lafayette Road in 2008. Again, the NICS system denied the purchase.

In both cases, the NICS system denied Rachel because he had “open, active misdemeanor arrest warrants on file out of Dorchester (Boston), Massachusetts.” According to court documents, those warrants were issued on July 1, 2004.

The Dorchester, Mass. Court Clerk’s Office confirmed to I-Team 8 that all of those warrants concern motor vehicle violations, including:

-Driving without a required inspection sticker
-Driving an uninsured motor vehicle
-Driving an unregistered motor vehicle
-Driving with suspended registration

According to the Marion County Sheriff’s Office, Rachel was first hired as a deputy in 2003, the year before the warrants were issued. Those warrants remained active for nearly a decade, stretching through both Sheriff Frank Anderson and Sheriff John Layton’s administrations. Rachel was fired as a Marion County Sheriff’s Deputy for “conduct unbecoming” on February 13, 2014.

That’s two days after court documents show he was interviewed by two Marion County detectives about the attempted gun purchase at Dock Brothers. That interview happened at the Marion County Jail, where Rachel was working.

According to court documents, Rachel admitted to the detectives that he had known about the active arrest warrants for “quite some time.” He also allegedly admitted that he had been turned down for a gun purchase in 2008, and that he knew that falsifying records during a gun purchase was against both state and federal law.

But, despite that admission on February 11- and the still open and active arrest warrants- Rachel was not put into handcuffs following the interview with detectives. That didn’t happen until March 3, when arrest logs show Rachel turned himself in.

Sheriff John Layton denied I-Team 8’s request for an interview on the situation, and an MCSO spokesperson had not responded to additional requests for comment by late Thursday.

I-Team 8 is also still awaiting a response to a public records request on Arnold Rachel’s MCSO disciplinary file.

Rachel was involved in a serious crash in 2009 while driving a transport van with 5 prisoners inside. The van was hit by an SUV, driven by a drunk driver. No one was seriously hurt, and Rachel was not charged in the incident.

I-Team 8’s messages for Rachel’s attorney were also not returned Thursday.

Rachel bonded out of the Marion County Jail on $500 bond on Wednesday. He is scheduled to return to court for a pre-trial hearing in June.

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