Former DeKalb officer sentenced to federal prison

ATLANTA — A former DeKalb County police officer faces a year and a day in federal prison for helping hide a stolen vehicle, unlawfully accessing government information and lying to federal agents, the FBI said.

Donald Briston, 41, of Lilburn, who pleaded guilty to the federal charges in July, was also sentenced by U.S. District Judge Timothy C. Batten Sr. to three years of supervised release and ordered to pay a $3,000 fine.

“The citizens of DeKalb County deserve better than this,” U.S. Attorney Sally Quillian Yates said in a news release. “The citizens of DeKalb County deserve better than this. During Bristol’s tenure as a police officer, he violated the laws that he had sworn to enforce. This sentence should serve as a stark reminder that no one is above the law.”

Authorities say Bristol helped two criminal suspects hide the fact that the vehicle they were using was stolen. In addition, the ex-officer also misused his access to a sensitive law enforcement database to provide others with information, investigators say.

When federal authorities questioned Bristol about his activities, he made a number of false statements, according to the FBI.

“Citizens place their trust and confidence in law enforcement officers to serve and protect them,” John S. Comer, acting DEA special agent in charge of the Atlanta Field Division said in a news release. “Mr. Bristol abused such trust. Fortunately, the vast majority of officers protect and serve the public with honor and distinction.”

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