- Associated Press - Thursday, January 19, 2017

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - Officials say a former federal probation officer in Pittsburgh has been sentenced to five months behind bars for leaking information to the sister of a drug suspect.

A federal judge in Harrisburg also sentenced Rachel Lynn Howze on Wednesday to five months of home confinement. The 30-year-old Howze pleaded guilty in August to obstructing an investigation.

The suspect was released from prison on probation in 2013. State drug agents say Howze accessed federal probation computer files and found that they were investigating the suspect for heroin dealing in 2014. Agents say she told the suspect’s sister to warn him.

Prosecutors say that based on the information she provided, the target and his accomplices were able to identify the informant and agreed that the informant “had to go.”

Howze was fired.

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