SOURCES: JCPD Internal Affairs requests ‘years’ of timecards from municipal court
The JCPD Internal Affairs Unit requested “years” of timecards for police officers from the Jersey City Municipal Court last week, according to sources.
If things weren’t looking bad enough for the Jersey City Police Department (JCPD), sources have informed Real Jersey City that the JCPD’s Internal Affairs Unit (IAU) requested “years” of timecards – over five years according to one source – for police officers from the Jersey City Municipal Court last week.
Sources indicated that the records would be used to identify potential cases of fraud, specifically double-dipping. Double-dipping occurs when a worker is knowingly being paid for two separate jobs running concurrently.
The cases of two convicted ex-JCPD officers, Juan Berrios and Andrea Fahrenholz, have sources believing that IAU’s inquiry is part of the ongoing federal investigation into the department. According to information from Berrios’ conviction:
At certain times, Jersey City police officers were required to appear in Court as a result of issuing tickets or citations. If the officers were required to appear at times when they were not otherwise working, they would be eligible to be paid overtime. However, if the officers were required to appear in court at the same time they were working as Jersey City police officers, they would not be paid overtime for appearing in court.
The conviction states that Berrios “sought and received overtime compensation for appearing in court at the same time he was purportedly working as a traffic director.” As such, the ex-JCPD officer “fraudulently obtained from Jersey City compensation for two separate assignments that occurred at the same time.”
As for Fahrenholz, though her conviction doesn’t include mention of fraudulent activities related to the municipal court, it’s believed she might be cooperating with federal authorities regarding the matter. Fahrenholz was assigned to the municipal court since sometime between 2013 and 2014, according to sources.
Sources also indicated that members of the JCPD’s street crimes and narcotics units were likely the target of the inquiry, but that other officers could be potentially ensnared. As well, a source added that IAU secured duty rosters for the street crimes unit for numerous years.
The Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office (HCPO) is not believed to be involved with the inquiry, according to a source. When asked for comment, a police official working in IAU told Real Jersey City that “they can’t divulge any information about any ongoing investigations.”
Jersey City spokesperson Kimberly Scalcione did not respond to an email asking the city to confirm or deny if the timecards were seized by IAU. It’s considered official Fulop Administration policy to ignore this journalist.
I appreciate that @JC_Gov Public Safety Director James Shea is getting straight to the point, but, for the record, I do write very polite emails to @KimWallaceJC. #JerseyCity pic.twitter.com/VWTJKPs0gf
— Real Jersey City (@RealJerseyCity) March 4, 2018