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Essex County Sheriff's Officer Imposter Faces 18 Months in Jail

Nutley man found guilty of pretending to be a law enforcement official to try to obtain someone's address.

Peter Repoli (Photo courtesy of the Essex County Prosecutor's Office)
Peter Repoli (Photo courtesy of the Essex County Prosecutor's Office)
A Nutley man was convicted on Wednesday of impersonating an Essex County Sheriff's Officer following a two-day trial.

Peter Repoli, 54, who has 10 prior convictions including robbery, terroristic threats, possession of a weapon and false imprisonment, faces 18 months in jail when he's sentenced on April 25.

According to the Essex County Prosecutor's Office, Repoli flashed a badge and threatened to arrest employees of Santini's Pizzeria on Franklin Street in Nutley in January 2013 if they did not give him the address of someone he thought they knew.

The employees told him they would try to get the information the next day. When Repoli returned, the employees found it odd he left on a bus, and searched his name and realized he had prior convictions, the prosecutor's office said. They alerted the Nutley Police Department and Repoli was arrested.

"When someone flashes a badge and indicates he is an officer of the law, members of the public should able to rely on that representation. Falsely presenting yourself as an officer is a serious offense and it is a crime taken seriously by this office," said Assistant Prosecutor Matthew Pustay, who tried the case. "For that reason, we will be seeking an 18-month sentence in New Jersey State prison, the maximum penalty."

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