A Long Branch police officer is facing charges of criminal sexual contact and harassment stemming from an incident at a recent police promotions party at a city bar, Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni announced on Friday. If convicted, he could face up to 18 months in state prison on one charge and 30 days in county jail on the other.
Long Branch Police Officer Patrick D. Joyce Jr., 35, of West Long Branch, a 12-year veteran of the Long Branch Police Department, is charged with fourth-degree criminal sexual contact and harassment, a petty disorderly persons offense.
The charges stem from an incident at Jack’s Goal Line Stand, where a private party was hosted following the promotion of four city police officers, on Friday, Feb. 1. It is alleged that at the private party Joyce inappropriately touched a 21-year-old woman without her consent for his own sexual arousal or gratification.
As a result of these charges, Joyce has been suspended from the Long Branch Police Department.
Joyce is scheduled to make his initial appearance in Monmouth County Superior Court on March 15.
If convicted of criminal sexual contact, Joyce faces up to 18 months in state prison. If convicted of harassment, he faces up to 30 days in the county jail.
The case is assigned to Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Melanie Falco, director of the office’s Professional Responsibilities and Bias Crime Unit.
Joyce is represented by Robert Norton, Esq., of Westfield.
— Edited press release from the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office