K-9 Commander Pleads Guilty to Misconduct

Dec 01, 2017

Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph D. Coronato announced Dec. 1 that John C. Adams had entered guilty pleas to official misconduct. Earlier this year, Adams was arrested for diverting cocaine used for training purposes to his own use. Adams, who had turned himself in to Toms River authorities, was serving as the commander of the Ocean County Sheriff’s Department K-9 unit at the time. He had been a sworn sheriff’s officer for 16 years.

As a consequence of his guilty pleas, Adams must forfeit his public employment. He is also ineligible for any future government employment in the state of New Jersey. The plea agreement requires Adams to serve a three-year state prison sentence, which includes a mandatory period of parole ineligibility of two years. 

Al Della Fave, prosecutor’s office spokesman, said the guilty plea is the result of an investigation that began in January 2017, which ultimately uncovered that Adams had failed to properly secure cocaine used in the training of canine animals. He said Adams initially falsely reported that the cocaine was accidentally discarded with canine training items. 

“Upon further investigation, it became apparent that Adams had blamed other members of the K-9 Unit for the cocaine’s disappearance after he diverted in excess of one kilogram of the controlled dangerous substance from its intended training purposes and used it for his personal consumption,” said Della Fave. 

The Ocean County Sheriff’s Department provided assistance and cooperation from the inception and throughout the investigation.

Adams remains free on bail pending his scheduled sentencing on April 6. —E.E.

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