NJ Correction Officer Indicted over Sex Assaults
A state correction officer from Burlington County has been indicted on charges that he impersonated a law enforcement officer to sexually assault four women.
50-year-old Juan Stevens of Burlington Township is charged in a 25-count state grand jury indictment with one count of a pattern of official misconduct and four counts each of second degree official misconduct, sexual assault, criminal restraint, criminal coercion, theft by extortion and impersonating a law enforcement officer, which is a fourth degree crime.
Stevens is accused of sexually assaulting four women at hotels or motels in Burlington County between May 2011 and July 2012.
Three of the women admitted they were engaged in prostitution, but they allegedly were coerced into having sex with Stevens free of charge or at a discount. In each case, Stevens allegedly identified himself as a law enforcement officer and displayed what appeared to be a badge so that the victim feared she would be arrested.
Once Stevens was arrested in March, a DNA match resulted in him being charged with another sexual assault reported in May 2011 that fit the same pattern.
"It is abhorrent that a state correction officer would corruptly use his badge to sexually assault women in the manner alleged in this indictment," said Acting Attorney General John Hoffman.
"We allege that Stevens engaged in a pattern of predatory conduct in which he used his state-issued badge to pose as a police officer and coerce women into having sex with him," said Director Elie Honig of the Division of Criminal Justice. "Stevens rightfully faces a range of serious charges, including counts of official misconduct and sexual assault that carry lengthy periods of parole ineligibility."
Second degree crimes carry a sentence of five to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $150,000, while third-degree crimes carry a sentence of three to five years in prison and a fine of up to $15,000. The official misconduct and theft by extortion charges carry a mandatory five-year term of parole ineligibility and the sexual assault charges carry a period of parole ineligibility equal to 85 percent of the prison term imposed. Fourth-degree crimes carry a sentence of up to 18 months in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
Any other potential victims are urged to contact the Division of Criminal Justice confidentially at 1-866-TIPS-4CJ.