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Chris Christie Bodyguard Arrested For Shoplifting In Pennsylvania

PITTSBURGH (AP) - A New Jersey state trooper shoplifted gun accessories and attempted to get out of his arrest by telling a Pennsylvania police officer that he would lose his job as a member of Gov. Chris Christie's security detail if charges were filed, a police chief told The Associated Press on Monday.

Trooper William Carvounis, 35, of North Brunswick, N.J., was at a Cabela's sporting goods store on Jan. 8 when he put several items in his cargo pants pockets - including some handgun grips, a pistol magazine and a hat - and put a $29.99 binocular strap in a box for a product worth $19.99, according to a criminal complaint filed by Tilden Officer Dennis Schwoyer.

While Carvounis paid for some items at checkout, he allegedly did not pay for the concealed items, which were worth $267.38.

Tilden Township Chief William McEllroy confirmed the arrest first reported by NewJersey.Watchdog.org, a news website run by an investigative reporter.

Schwoyer filed the charges after Carvounis repeatedly asked for a break, McEllroy told the AP.

"It was, more or less, 'Look, I've got a good job, I'm on the governor's security detail, I don't want to lose my job,' along those lines," McEllroy said.

Carvounis didn't explicitly ask for the break because of his position on the governor's detail; it was "more or less one cop asking another cop for a break multiple times," McEllroy said. He noted that his department's policy forbids such special treatment.

The trooper's attorney, Charles Sciarra, said his client denies he sought special treatment and the underlying shoplifting charges.

He said a police report and the criminal complaint don't mention the trooper asking for a break.

"The initial reports we have don't indicate anything about such a request," said Sciarra, of Hamilton, N.J. "With that said, my client made purchases that day and denies any allegation of any shoplifting. And quite frankly, we see no connection between what's occurred in the store in Pennsylvania and his duties for the New Jersey State Police."

Sciarra confirmed that Carvounis has been suspended from his job. He said "his suspension paperwork from the state police does not mention anything about asking for a courtesy and abusing his position."

Carvounis is charged with two counts of retail theft, online court records show. One is a first-degree misdemeanor that can carry up to five years' in prison, and the other a summary offense, which is similar to a traffic ticket.

The trooper remained free on bond Monday, and court records show he has waived his right to a preliminary hearing, meaning the charges must be disposed of at a trial or through a plea in Berks County Common Pleas Court.

Join the discussion

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SKCRCPUSCG February 04 2014 at 9:19 AM

How dumb can you be..... If a humgry man steala food, one could show a little compassion, but for plain theft, no way.

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alexander.coppersmith February 04 2014 at 1:15 PM

This man needs to be fired and tried in court if he's guilty...period. No special treatment. He's disgraced the honor of the profession.

Again, if he's guilty.

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kesubrma February 04 2014 at 10:54 AM

He could of gotten away with it about 20 years ago, but in this day of age no !!!
Today you see many law enforcement getting arrested for all kinds of crimes, and
DUI, but 20 years ago they could of gotten that break they hoped for.

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bmagee5087 February 04 2014 at 8:28 AM

He needs to be fired. Bet money this was not his first rodeo, but rather got caught on this one.
Integrity, honesty, loyalty some of the corner stones of being a good police officer.

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1 reply
Shalom, Carmela bmagee5087 February 04 2014 at 2:55 PM

My thoughts exactly, he did not just wake up that morning and decided to shop lift while at a Cabela's in Pa. I do think Christy probaly handpicks who he wants to guard him but doubt he knew this officer had a problem .

Flag Reply +1 rate up
hoofprint February 04 2014 at 10:58 AM

The man did a very stupid thing, now he has to pay the price and should be treated like any other shoplifter. Hopefully this will happen.

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menazia February 04 2014 at 10:09 AM

The whole saga just keeps getting better and better. And you just have to love the attorney's comments. Is that the best he can come up with for probably $400 or more an hour?

And quite frankly, we see no connection between what's occurred in the store in Pennsylvania and his duties for the New Jersey State Police."

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1 reply
shawnsoldon menazia February 04 2014 at 12:10 PM

are you kidding me he is the personal bodyguard to Chrisite? what if he did that while proteting Christie It is a severe error in lack of correct judgement, that is the point of the article!!
The trooper did not know right from wrong!

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cecejoe94 February 04 2014 at 12:57 PM


Flag Reply +2 rate up
karenrumpler February 04 2014 at 12:56 PM

This has nothing to do with the governor! This is the police officer's own stupidity and he-the officer-should pay for it, not anyone else!

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1 reply
Shalom, Carmela karenrumpler February 04 2014 at 2:14 PM

you are so right. his sticky fingers, his problem.

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Mr. Feighner February 04 2014 at 8:41 AM

Talk about having a bad year. Time for Gov. Christie to really look at the people round him...

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bphesseco February 04 2014 at 8:50 AM

The only people who are enjoying this more than the Democrats are the other Republican wannabes. I can just hear the party horns blowing in Paul Ryan's campaign headquarters.

Flag Reply +4 rate up
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