Scott Coates, 42, of St. Joseph pleaded guilty Tuesday to misprision of a felony in U.S. District Court.
The charge is connected to a 2007 shooting investigation in which Coates allowed a man with prior convictions to keep a gun. According to court documents, Coates knew the man was committing a crime by having a firearm. However, he failed to report the crime to his superior officers.
The court documents also state that the 20-year veteran of the St. Joseph Police Department agreed to resign from the department, resign his post certification and "never be employed in any law enforcement, or law enforcement related job in the future."
Police Chief Chris Connally said Coates had been on non-duty status with the department, which is unpaid, since the charges were filed.
The government will recommend a sentence of probation under the plea agreement. A sentencing date has not been set.