Local/State

Gloucester Township police officer arrested

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

A South Jersey police officer finds himself on the wrong side of the law. He's been charged with drug offenses.

Not an announcement any police chief would relish, one of his own charged with drug possession.

31 year old patrol officer Tom Eden was arrested Wednesday as he exited a room in a local motel after allegedly buying 5 Percocet prescription pain killers and two Oxycotin placebos from a police informant.

"I am angered," says Gloucester Township Police Chief Harry Earle. "That Mr. Eden allegedly abused his position of trust and violated the laws he swore to uphold."

To add insult to injury, the chief says Eden was in uniform, on duty and driving a marked vehicle at the time of his arrest.

It is not clear what Eden was planning to do with the pills he allegedly possessed. Chief Earle was asked about possible resale.

"In terms of moving forward and seeing if he was distributing or not, that is something that we are still working on," said Chief Earle.

At a nearby township park, residents are shocked by the news.

"I am surprised," said Alisha Woody.

"I tell my kids that they are there to help us. Police officers are good, and you don't need to be afraid of them," said Judy Alberto.

Folks in Gloucester Township hold the police in high regard.

The mayor says the department works hard to earn that respect. Eden's arrest hurts.

"When you have an issue like this that happens, it certainly is very frustrating," says Mayor David Mayer.

The department says Tuesday's arrest followed an internal affairs investigation that was conducted with the Camden County Prosecutor's Office.

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gloucester county, new jersey, police, local/state, john rawlins
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