Section Commander Captain Joseph Pepe
Unit Commander Lieutenant Heather McManus
The Official Corruption Unit investigates various allegations of criminal misconduct involving government employees and public officials. A public official can be any person who is elected, appointed, or hired to a position of trust in government.
The criminal investigations conducted by the Official Corruption Unit are among the most sensitive cases handled by the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office. Any public corruption investigation requires detectives in the unit to be extremely thorough as they gather their evidence. The investigations must be able to withstand the scrutiny of the criminal, civil, and administrative courts as well as to ensure the public trust.
The Official Corruption Unit also reviews all local police department internal affairs complaints that occur within Atlantic County. Any type of misconduct complaint made against police officers in Atlantic County must be forwarded to the Official Corruption Unit for legal review.
The Official Corruption Unit is responsible for reviewing the internal affairs complaints from the eighteen local police departments operating within Atlantic County as well as complaints received by the Atlantic County Justice Facility and the Atlantic County Sheriff’s Department. Some of the criminal investigations conducted by the Official Corruption Unit are generated from these internal affairs complaints. Some examples of police misconduct are excessive force, improper arrest, improper entry, improper search, differential treatment, and domestic violence. The Official Corruption Unit has the authority to supersede any internal affairs investigation from the local police department or conduct that investigation in cooperation with them if the need arises.
In addition, detectives in the Official Corruption Unit work very closely with members of the Federal Bureau of Investigation – Public Corruption Task Force involving cases of mutual interest. This relationship has been invaluable in combating public corruption within the county throughout the years.