An 18-year veteran of the police department in Ocean Township is charged with theft and forgery related to a rental property he owns in Brielle.

Monmouth County Prosecutor Chris Gramiccioni said that Cory Cole, 49, entered into a lease with a woman who agreed to rent a property Cole owns in Brielle.

The lease required that Cole maintained the $4,200.00 security deposit the woman gave him on August 27, 2019.

Cole was then supposed to maintain the security deposit in a bank account during the term of the lease and assuming she did not damage the property, return the money to the woman at the end of the lease.

He instead kept pushing back the move in date and deposited the money into his bank account and depleted the funds within days, withdrawing the bulk of it in cash.

An investigation further revealed that to satisfy the Brielle School District’s residency inquiries with respect to the woman’s children, Cole uttered a forged lease to the school district indicating that the victim had moved into a different property that he owned in Brielle, which was in actuality being rented by someone else.

Cole is charged with third-degree Theft by Failure to Make Required Disposition of Property Received, and two counts of fourth-degree Forgery.

“We will continue to hold police officers accountable and reiterate the message that no one is above the law,” Prosecutor Gramiccioni said.

“It is a sad day for the Ocean Township Police Department. We are shocked, embarrassed and angered by this event," Ocean Township Police Chief Steve Peters said. "The Ocean Township Police Department is a highly professional organization and we will not let the actions of one officer overshadow the great work and dedication by the men and women of this department."

If convicted of Theft by Failure to Make Required Disposition of Property Received, Cole faces a sentence of three to five years in prison.

If convicted of Forgery, he faces up to 18 months in state prison on each count.

Cole remains suspended without pay by the Ocean Township Police Department.

The case is assigned to Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Melanie Falco, Director of the Office’s Professional Responsibility and Bias Crime Bureau.

Anyone with additional information about this case or if you were a victim of similar activity by Cole, you are urged to contact Detective Sergeant Ryu Washburne of the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office at 1-800-533-7443.

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