LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Former Bullitt County Chief Deputy John Cottrell plead not guilty in court Thursday, one day after his indictment.

The judge released him on his own recognizance, meaning Cottrell will not have to go jail as he awaits his trial.

A grand jury indictment says last October, Cottrell took drugs from the evidence room -- including marijuana, hydrocodone and other pills.

"If you are a police officer, and you have felony charges hanging over your head, you cannot work. We want to get this in front of the court as soon as possible to seek an acquittal or dismissal with prejudice," said Cottrell's Defense Attorney Garry Adams.

Cottrell filed a whistleblower lawsuit, claiming he was fired for revealing that former Sheriff Dave Greenwell, who was also indicted, was involved in criminal activity.

Investigators say Cottrell also forged a deputy identification badge for his girlfriend, Natasha Parrish, to work off duty using the badge. 

The defense is now saying she was a special deputy, but the Prosecution disagrees.

The case had been dismissed, but now those involved have agreed to move forward.

"We'll just wait to see what the evidence shows. We think the evidence shows she was not listed as a special deputy with deputies listed on the force," Special Prosecutor Terry Geoghegan said.

Attorneys said both cases involving the new indictment and the old indictment have been combined.

"We're turning over all the discovery that we possibly can. It's very voluminous," Geoghegan said. "There's a lot of it. It can be public record before it's over."

Cottrell's trial is scheduled for Nov. 16.

"Obviously at anytime we would say anyone is presumed innocent until proven guilty at trial including Mr. Cottrell," Geoghegan said.

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