McGruff the Crime Dog took a “bite out of crime,” but instead of chomping down on the wrongdoing, he kept a piece of the crime pie for himself.
According to WebProNews on Feb. 8, 41-year-old former McGruff the Crime Dog actor John R. Morales was sentenced to 16 years in a federal prison after being found guilty of drugs and weapons charges.
Morales played the iconic childhood McGruff character for the Texas Harris County Sheriff's Association in the late 1990's, donning the dog suit and overcoat and spreading the message that “crime doesn’t pay” at area schools and guest appearances.
According to CBS Local, Morales was arrested in 2011 for speeding in Galveston, Texas, and ironically, an actual police dog “sniffed” out pot plants in Morales' trunk. The discovery of the plants led police to search the “Crime Dog’s” home, where they found an incredible growing operation – over 1,000 plants along with 27 weapons, 9,000 rounds of ammo and two grenade launchers.
Morales’ defense attorney, Ken Fesler II, argued that his client got involved in drugs to assist his sick relatives. On Monday, the former actor was sentenced to 16 years in prison.
Sentencing U.S. District Judge Vanessa Gilmore stated to Morales: “Everything I read about you makes you seem like a scary person.”