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A retired police officer facing 122 counts of sex crimes involving teenage boys saw his bail increased to $250,000 on Tuesday after more alleged victims came forward.
James Carey, 52, has been accused of sexually abusing at least four youths during his decades-long career as a police officer, Boy Scout leader, and instructor in youth programs run by the Pennsylvania police and fire departments. Taking advantage of his position of authority, Carey is accused of making repeated, involuntary sexual contact with his victims over several years, according to an 80-page report filed in the Bucks County Common Pleas Court.
On one alleged occasion, Carey was working as an instructor in a middle school Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) program when he discovered an eighth-grader with marijuana. Confronting the boy, Carey allegedly stepped into a bathroom with him and locked the door, then conducted an invasive pat-down that ended with him performing oral sex on the teenager.
Carey allegedly sexually assaulted the boy several more times that year at a local recreation center, in a wooded area, and in the boy’s home while his parents were away.
Other alleged victims described similar experiences with the police officer. One witness claimed that Carey raped him numerous times, starting when he was 13 and ending at 18. At one point, Carey volunteered to be that teen’s supervisor when the teen was court-ordered to perform community service work. Before signing off on the boy’s paperwork, Carey would allegedly have the boy shower at his house before sexually assaulting him.
“[Carey] was a veritable wolf in sheep’s clothing, walking among us,” District Attorney Matt Weintraub said, according to a press release by the Bucks County District Attorney’s Office.
Detectives began investigating Carey in 2001 after getting a report that he’d had inappropriate contact with a 17-year-old. No charges were filed then, as the age of consent in Pennsylvania is 16. However, the District Attorney at the time wrote to Carey’s police department saying that the officer’s behavior was “very concerning,” according to the press release.
Carey was fired from the police force for unrelated reasons in 2005, but was hired back through arbitration in 2006. While away from the force, Carey worked at a campground in New Jersey where he became the target of an investigation for alleged inappropriate conduct with minors there.
Carey retired from law enforcement in 2009.
Investigations began to close in on Carey over the past few months. In late February, authorities searched the home of an alleged co-conspirator, 60-year-old Charles Goodenough, who ran the local Fire Explorers program with Carey. Investigators seized several electronic devices from Goodenough’s home – he was found dead three days later, according to the press release. His death was ruled a suicide from a drug overdose.
Carey was arrested on Apr. 7. He faces a total of 122 counts of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, indecent assault, aggravated indecent assault, statutory sexual assault, unlawful contact with a minor, corruption of minors and official oppression, according to the press release.
Carey’s bond was initially set at $100,000, and he bonded out just hours after his arrest, according to a Tuesday press release by the District Attorney’s Office. But after police received calls from numerous other alleged victims in the days following Carey’s arrest, a judge called the former officer’s bond “woefully inadequate” on Tuesday and increased his bail amount to $250,000.
The judge also forbade Carey from having contact with minors and ordered him to surrender his passport and police credentials.
Carey’s attorney, Thomas Joachim, vehemently denied all claims against his client in court.
“There’s rumors, innuendos and suspicions, but not one fact leading to a charge of an assault in the last 20 years,” Joachim said, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer.
The District Attorney’s Office “strongly believes” that Carey has more victims who have not yet come forward, according to the release. Anyone with any information on this case is urged to contact Bucks County Detectives at (215) 340-8216.
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