The Star-Ledger, nj.com
BYLINE: Ben Horowitz/The Star-Ledger
Link to Article
Former Denville police officer, Eugene Blood, right, appears in Superior Court with his attorney Edward Bilinkas, left. Blood pleaded guilty to breaking into the police evidence locker to steal drugs for his own use.
Robert Sciarrino/The Star-Ledger/Court Pool
DENVILLE — A veteran Denville police officer pleaded guilty today to stealing drugs from the department’s evidence room.
Eugene Blood, 38, a Denville resident who has served on the force for nine years, admitted taking less than $200 worth of oxycodone and heroin on various dates in 2010 and 2011.
Under a plea agreement with the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office, Blood will receive a three-year state prison sentence that would require him to serve two years before becoming eligible for parole.
Blood also agreed to give up his job, his pension and future public employment.
Blood, who was experiencing neck and back problems, became addicted to pain killers and was taking “up to 20 pain pills a day,” said his attorney, Edward Bilinkas.
Blood pleaded guilty to a single count of official misconduct. He had also faced six other charges, including burglary and theft of a controlled dangerous substance.
Blood, who was arrested just a month ago, decided “from day one to plead guilty and put this circumstance behind him,” Bilinkas said.
Blood is to be sentenced on Jan. 20 in Superior Court in Morristown.
Morris County Prosecutor Robert Bianchi, who appeared in court for the plea, called it “a very sad case.”
He pointed out that “numerous cases have been compromised” because of the thefts, but added, “I’ve never seen an officer so willing to accept responsibility.”
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