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Fairfield police detective accused of stealing drugs arraigned

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BRIDGEPORT -

The Fairfield police detective accused of stealing drugs from the department was arraigned Friday.

Detective Stephen Rilling, who is the son of the mayor of Norwalk, opted not to comment after his arraignment.

A newly released arrest warrant says he used a form to sign out the drugs, claiming he needed them for investigation follow-ups and lab testing. Rilling allegedly stole 800 OxyContin pills and 225 folds of heroin, as well as some cocaine.

Fellow officers became suspicious when they found empty evidence bags under Rilling's desk.

Last week, Fairfield's police chief said the department has since beefed up security and now requires two officers to sign out evidence.

Detective Rilling talked about his long-running addiction issues in an online posting, writing, "How could this happen? I'm a narcotics cop, this isn't supposed to happen."

Rilling has worked for the police department for 19 years, 10 of them with the narcotics unit. Rilling was placed on administrative leave back in April when police discovered the possible missing drugs.

Police say the alleged misappropriation of drug evidence went on for eight months.

"All that I'll really say is that he's handling this very difficult situation as appropriately as can be," says Rilling's defense attorney, John Gulash.

Detective Rilling went to rehab three years ago. When he was released, Fairfield police put him back in the narcotics unit.

Rilling himself called the decision reckless, but the department says it had to give him his job back due to the police union contract.

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