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Judge denies former officer’s request to toss evidence

A Boone County judge denied a man’s request to keep evidence from his trial for steroid distribution.

Judge Jeff Harris ruled Thursday afternoon that Columbia police had probable cause to search a house for evidence that Gamal Castile had given a man steroids. Defense attorney Richard Hicks said CPD based its request for a search warrant on unreliable information.

Harris said that evidence presented at a hearing Feb. 26 showed that officers did have probable cause to search the home, including messages between Castile and the man he gave the steroids to, as well as a receipt for the steroids the man bought previously.

Harris also disagreed with Hicks’s argument that the warrant CPD secured was “stale” by the time they served it. The alleged crime took place on Oct. 7, 26 days before police searched the home.

“The alleged steroid sale did not come to the attention of law enforcement until November 1 – the date of the issuance of the warrant – and the factual bases of the affidavit and warrant established that probable cause still existed,” Harris said.

A grand jury indicted Castile in 2018 for drug distribution, drug possession and unlawful possession of a firearm. A trial is set for April 16.

Castile worked for the Columbia Police Department, and was one of the first members of the Community Outreach Unit.

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