NEW ALBANY — A Floyd County judge has set bond at $50,000 court cash for a New Albany police officer arrested Monday on felony charges for obstruction of justice and official misconduct.
The ruling was made hours after Adam Schneider, 40, appeared for an initial hearing Tuesday in Floyd County Superior Court No. 1, where a not guilty plea was entered on his behalf. He was charged Monday in Floyd County with three level 6 felonies for obstruction of justice and a level 6 felony for official misconduct related to allegations from May and June.
He had previously been held without bond until the hearing, but the new amount means he could be released by paying 10% or $5,000. Schneider is also out on bond in a separate Clark County case, in which the prosecutor filed two level 6 felony charges for voyeurism Friday.
According to court records from the Floyd County case, investigators say Schneider was involved in a sexual relationship with a confidential informant with the New Albany Police department from May to June, and that he had on several occasions failed to investigate or charge the woman when she was found to have methamphetamine. Records show that on two occasions when she asked him what she should do with a package of methamphetamine she had been given, he told her to “sell it, get rid of it and not get caught with it.”
He’s also alleged to have on one occasion stopped the informant and a suspect in a drug case when they were in a car, which the informant had arranged. Police say although methamphetamine was found on both, Schneider took the informant’s drugs and made it appear as though they had belonged to the suspect.
On Tuesday, Indianapolis-based defense attorney John Kautzman filed a motion for Schneider to either be released on his own recognizance in the case, or be given “the lowest possible bond amount.” The state requested he be held on $75,000 full cash.
During the initial hearing, Floyd County Chief Deputy Prosecutor Evan Bardach told Judge Carrie Stiller that the charges warranted the high bond because they were “some of the most serious level 6 felonies that could be brought by the State of Indiana” involving a police officer accused of planting drugs.
Bardach also said that the allegation that Schneider perpetuated drugs in the community by telling the informant to sell what she had “is a violent crime, it puts Floyd County citizens in danger,” and that the accusations “endanger every man and woman who has chosen to wear a badge...”
Bardach also referenced the Clark County case, in which Schneider is accused of surreptitiously recording video of two women changing clothes in his wife’s home-based business on two occasions, in 2019 and in June. He was found to have two videos on his phone when police investigating the Floyd County charges executed a search warrant on the device.
Defense attorney Kautzman said it was his understanding that the defense in that case would be that Schneider had had a “nanny cam” installed in the room where the business is because there had been a previous concern about a theft.
Kautzman presented Judge Stiller with the basis for his request to lower bond or allow Schneider to be released on his own recognizance — that his client has been a lifelong resident of Southern Indiana, owns a home with his family and had been with the New Albany Police Department for several years.
He also said that the officer has no criminal history, that “there has been no evidence that there is a physical threat to anyone” and that he was presumed innocent. He said it was his “...highest priority to be able to get him released.”
Stiller told the attorneys in the hearing that they should expect to have a decision on bond “very promptly,” although she had stated at the start of proceedings that “It would not be the typical standard of this court to do [a release on recognizance] bond on a level 6 felony.”
Schneider has an initial hearing in the Clark County case Aug. 11 at 10:30 a.m. in Clark County Circuit Court No. 3. He has a pretrial conference set for the Floyd County case Aug. 26 at 9 a.m. in Floyd County Superior Court No. 1.
New Albany Police Chief Todd Bailey previously said that Schneider had been placed on paid administrative leave at the start of the investigation June 28 and suspended without pay July 3. An internal investigation will also be conducted by the department.