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Thursday, February 3, 2011

State Trooper Convicted Of Obstructing Child Molestation Investigation

Mixed verdict in Pa. trooper meddling allegation
The Associated Press - February 2, 2011

CARLISLE, Pa. (AP) — A central Pennsylvania state trooper has been convicted of obstructing the investigation into a child molestation allegation involving a woman the trooper said was his lover. The Cumberland County jury returned a mixed verdict Tuesday, acquitting Trooper Barry Tangert Jr. of improperly influencing a public servant and retaliating against a prosecutor. Prosecutors say Tangert wanted state police to investigate so he could interrogate the alleged victim himself. A former state police official testified that Tangert planned to arrest a county assistant district attorney in retaliation for not doing as he asked. Tangert's lawyer said his client may have violated state police policy but didn't break the law. The prosecutor was never arrested. Sentencing is scheduled for March 29.

************************************RELATED BACKGROUND STORY:

Pennsylvania State Police trooper accused of trying to obstruct prosecution in Cumberland County child molestation case
The Patriot-News by Chris A. Courogen - December 29, 2009

A Pennsylvania state trooper from Harrisburg was in Cumberland County Prison this afternoon following his arrest on charges he tried to influence how the Cumberland County district attorney's office prosecuted a child-molestation case. Trooper Barry R. Tangert Jr., 45, was arraigned this afternoon in front of District Judge Richard S. Dougherty, who ordered Tangert held in lieu of $5,000 straight bail on charges of threats and other improper influence in official and political matters, obstructing administration of law and criminal attempt to obstruct the administration of law. According to court documents, Tangert, who has been suspended without pay, contacted Cumberland County Assistant District Attorney Jaime Keating on August 4, 2008, saying he had information about a case against three Cumberland County residents accused of molesting a teenage girl. According to court documents, Tangert told Keating he was friends with two of the people charged and that only the third was guilty. Keating said he would not discuss the case, but Tangert asked to interview the victim, according to court documents. The documents allege that Tangert said he'd be able to put pressure on the victim that would get her to recant her story, allowing Keating to dismiss the charges against Tangert's friends. Keating declined the offer, the documents state, but Tangert continued to pressure Keating, saying “I feel like I gotta do something.” “I feel like I have to go to the press or something.” Tangert told his supervisors he had met with Keating and listed what he thought was wrong with the case, according to court documents. Tangert also told his supervisors he planned to file charges against Keating for alleged wiretap violations, obstruction of justice and endangering the welfare of children. Tangert also had personal information about Keating, including his home address, according to court documents. Keating told police he feared for his safety and that the incident was disruptive to his professional and personal life. The case against the three charged in the child molestation was dismissed after the victim did not testify. Tangert's preliminary hearing is scheduled for 10 a.m. Wednesday in front of District Judge Jessica Brewbaker in Carlisle.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Serve and protect whom from what exactly?