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Former Cop Sentenced for Drug Deals

They say that once you are a cop, you’re a cop for life. Even after retirement, the cop instincts and attitudes don’t go away. And for the most part, this is a good thing. Ex-cops can become a wonderful resource – citizens with the experience and judgment needed to help out in an emergency, and the savvy to help keep the rest of us on the straight and narrow. But it doesn’t always work out that way.

A retired Norristown police officer was sentenced to up to 50 years in prison for doing the opposite.

Jack Pennington, retired at 68, was found guilty of selling drugs. Not only that, he was using his old badge and special police plate to do so. Those items retain a certain authority, even after a police officer is no longer on the job. The drugs in question were methamphetamine and prescription opiates. He was caught by the Montgomery County Narcotics Enforcement Team.

With a record now (16 felony convictions in one go), Pennington will likely pass away in prison, although he could be released in 17 years instead of serving out the full term.

According to reporting from the Mongomery News, the judge in the case found the crimes particularly heinous. “His criminal conduct has had a significant negative impact on the community, and this type of criminal activity merits a significant sentence,” said Common Pleas Judge William R. Carpenter. “A lesser sentence would depreciate the seriousness of this kind of crime.”

Using wiretaps and other methods, narcotics officers were able to catch Pennington red-handed, nabbing him when he was about to meet his supplier. The pills mentioned at trial, along with the meth, were Percocet, a strong, prescription narcotic with a high potential for abuse.

It’s a shame to read a story like this, and the public should realize that this represents a very small number of cops who go bad.

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