Police officers in New Jersey are tasked with protecting their communities and upholding the law. It is only natural to assume that they are safe and trustworthy persons who can be depended upon in a dire situation. So if an officer is accused of a crime, it could not only affect their personal reputation but their professional one as well.
Two officers in New Jersey have been charged with the sexual assault of a teenage girl. The acts allegedly occurred in separate incidents while the officers were in a position of authority. It has not been disclosed whether the 16-year-old girl was the sole victim in the incidents.
Although further details regarding the alleged crime have not been disclosed, both officers were arrested following an investigation by the prosecutor's office and two police departments. One officer was arrested in the city where he lives, and the other was arrested upon arriving at work.
Both officers were charged with a number of second-degree crimes, including endangering the welfare of a child, sexual assault and official misconduct. They were also charged with a fourth-degree crime, criminal sexual contact.
In general, these types of crimes can have grave consequences for those involved. Beyond fines and a prison sentence, individuals accused of sex crimes could lose their jobs. In addition, having a criminal record can make it very difficult for a person to find employment or rent an apartment. Depending on the type of crime, a criminal conviction could even affect the accused's right to vote, right to procure a firearm and can even dictate where the accused may live.
No one deserves to lose their livelihood due to mere accusations of sex crimes, but unfortunately it does happen. Those whose lives have been affected by criminal accusations may want to discuss the situation with a professional, who can help them better understand the charge they face and their legal options.
Source: pressofAtlanticCity, "Two police officers accused of assaulting 16-year-old," Lynda Cohen, May 21, 2014