Prosecutor: Officer Charged With Stealing From Police Union

A Brielle police officer was charged Monday with stealing more than $700 from the expense account of the local police union, announced Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni announced.

Michael W. Palmer, Jr., 33, of Wall Township, is charged with one count of third-degree theft by unlawful taking. If convicted, he faces up to five years in a New Jersey state prison.

An internal affairs review by the Brielle Police Department and follow-up investigation by this office’s Professional Responsibilities and Bias Crimes Unit revealed Palmer made several ATM cash withdrawals in Wall Township, Ocean Township and Neptune City from the expense account of the Brielle Policemen’s Benevolent Association (PBA) Local 395, while serving as their treasurer between January and June of this year. The withdrawals were unrelated to PBA business and were made for personal reasons.

“We will continue to hold law enforcement officers accountable for their actions,” Prosecutor Gramiccioni said. “Bad cops will be weeded out as their unlawful or improper actions are discovered. Mr. Palmer betrayed the trust of his fellow officers and the public at-large — this is inexcusable. Mr. Palmer is not a typical example of our law enforcement community. Our law enforcement is made up of genuinely good people whose only interest is serving the community,”

Palmer was hired as a Brielle Borough police officer on Dec. 1, 2018. He earned $105,383 per year. He is currently suspended without pay pending the adjudication of both the criminal and administrative proceedings.

“This is of a very sad situation, but it is as equally disappointing,” Brielle Chief of Police Gary J. Olsen said. “When any officer engages in this type of conduct, he/she violates the trust and integrity of the community in which they have sworn to protect and serve, and also violates the trust and integrity of their co-workers. Police Officers are always held to higher standard, and here in the Brielle Police Department, that standard is even higher.”

The case is being prosecuted by Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Melanie Falco, Director of the Office’s Professional Responsibilities and Bias Crimes Unit.

John Caroli
BCS Wealth Management