When an HPD patrolman pulled over Anthony Rochell Foster on the North Freeway earlier this year, he had to be a little surprised when Foster's Texas Driver's License picture showed the 45-year-old in the Columbia blue of a fellow Houston cop.
The patrolman had to be still more surprised when the youthful-looking Foster told him he was "retired" from the force. Asked where he was coming from, Foster told the cop "Mesquite, Texas," and told the cop that his nephew had car trouble in Houston and needed to get back home. Unfortunately for Foster, he couldn't name an address in Mesquite where this nephew lived.
The cop asked Foster for his insurance, and then noted that Foster's hands shook as he handed over his papers, and later stated that he got still more nervous, especially when asked about a "Kentucky Deluxe" whiskey box on the third-row seat of Foster's Chevy.
Foster told the cop there was nothing illegal in the vehicle and then gave written consent for a search. The cop opened up the Kentucky Deluxe crate and found inside 34 vacuum-sealed bags labeled with the numbers "5," "10" and "50," with each of those numbers corresponding to thousands of dollars. In all, there was $350,187 in Foster's car.
Foster then told the cop he was a courier for a couple of shadowy businesses, but couldn't produce any papers to back up that claim. He also told the cop that he had made a detour from the Dallas area to Palmer, Texas, where he picked up a box he knew contained money, but he claimed not to have known how much.
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He was released at the scene. The money was confiscated, and late last month, the State of Texas sued to claim it as contraband.
Back in 2009, several Hispanic men in the Denver Harbor section of Houston that Foster patrolled filed complaints stating that Foster had been shaking down motorists. HPD's Internal Affairs unit launched a proactive sting, and Foster, then a 15-year veteran of the force, was caught soliciting a bribe from a fellow cop he believed to be a mere lowly Juan Q. Citizen.
Foster was cuffed and taken to jail in his uniform. He was relieved of his duties within days and eventually convicted of misdemeanor theft by a public servant, for which he received ten days in jail and a year's probation.
He has not been charged with any crimes with regards to this latest incident.