Skip to main content

East Orange Constable Convicted of Impersonating Police Officer

East Orange

By: Richard L. Smith 

Acting Essex County Prosecutor Theodore N. Stephens, II announced today that Todd Thompson, 55, of East Orange, has been convicted of impersonating a police officer and unlawful possession of a weapon. 

 Essex County Prosecutor‘s Office Spokesman Robert Florida, on July 2, 2022, Thompson, a constable appointed by the City of East Orange, was involved in a traffic incident in the area of Penn Station in Newark during the incident,

Police say Thompson performed an illegal traffic stop of a taxi cab driver using police lights he had installed in his personal vehicle. 

A family member of the victim anonymously to RLS Media the  incident unfolded when Thompson was stopped at a light in the area while the victim was behind him. When the light changed, the victim reportedly blew his horn after Thompson extended his stay at the light. 

After profanity laced shouting by Thompson, the victim attempted to drive around but was pulled over by the defendant Thompson. 

During the stop, Thompson falsely identified himself as a police officer and demanded documents from the victim. 

The defendant also brandished a handgun. 

The victim, upon realizing the defendant was not a police officer, called the Newark Police Department, which ultimately arrested the defendant. 

Thompson was charged with terroristic threats, impersonating a police officer, and unlawful possession of a weapon.

Following a trial before the Honorable Siobhan A. Teare of the Superior Court of New Jersey, Thompson was convicted of impersonating a police officer and unlawful possession of a weapon.

Sentencing is scheduled for July 31, 2023. 

The case was tried by Deputy Chief Assistant Prosecutor Walter J. Dirkin, who commended the victim for calling the police when confronted with this extremely dangerous circumstance.

“His quick thinking and cool head prevented this situation from escalating,” said Dirkin. “Hopefully, the deliberative and reasoned verdict in this case will deter others from acting irresponsibly with firearms.”