TRENTON, N.J. — A New Jersey State Police internal affairs report shows that four troopers were either terminated or forcibly relieved of their duties for misconduct last year.
They include an officer who was convicted on charges of domestic violence and mishandling a firearm, another who engaged in “racially offensive behavior” and discussed police procedures in public while off-duty, one who abused sick time policies then lied about it and a trooper who drove drunk while on the job.
The disciplined employees were not identified, with state police officials calling the cases internal personal matters. Troopers disciplined for misconduct are generally not publicly named unless they are criminally charged.
Overall incidents within the state police force increased by 1 percent in 2015 from the previous year, NJ.com reported (http://bit.ly/2e6r1OT ).
Internal affairs found that incidents classified as police misconduct decreased slightly while those categorized as administrative issues rose. Lt. Brian Polite says the change can be attributed to an improvement in self-policing within the force.
“Front-line supervisors are doing a better job of recognizing any small signs of things that could become issues and they’re taking steps immediately to address them,” Polite said.
The report indicates there were a total of 727 incidents last year for the division — which has 2,600 sworn officers.
Many of the troopers disciplined in 2015 pleaded guilty to or were convicted of incidents involving alcohol or domestic violence. Only two officers were punished for using excessive force.
State police received 1,084 compliments from citizens in 2015.
Information from: NJ.com, http://www.nj.com