Ex-Iowa police officer gets 10 years in prison

Published On: Dec 12 2012 10:34:00 AM CST

A former Forest City police officer convicted of starting a fire at the police station and stealing a rifle from a police car has been given up to 10 years in prison.

The Mason City Globe Gazette says 35-year-old Thaddeus Ellenbecker still maintained his innocence when he was sentenced on Tuesday in Winnebago County District Court in Forest City.

A judge convicted Ellenbecker of second-degree arson and second-degree burglary in a nonjury trial.

Ellenbecker was charged with setting the fire that damaged the Forest City police station in October 2011 and with stealing an assault rifle from a squad car in November 2010.

Ellenbecker was shot during a scuffle with a state agent investigating the crimes.