Police Detective in Ocean County, NJ, Suspended; Facing False Report, Contempt, Weapon Charges
A detective with the Island Heights Police Department is facing charges after he allegedly filed false reports about having previously sold guns that he was required to surrender.
47-year-old Matthew Curtis of Little Egg Harbor Township has been charged with,
- Providing a false report to law enforcement authorities
- Contempt of a judicial or protective order
- Certain person prohibited from possessing a weapon
The Ocean County Prosecutor's Office says an investigation revealed that Curtis was required to surrender to law enforcement any guns that he owned or possessed pursuant to a temporary restraining order (TRO) that was issued against him on May 11, 2022.
- On that date, Curtis surrendered a number of weapons to law enforcement.
- On May 13, 2022, Curtis authored and signed a letter advising law enforcement that he had sold three handguns that were registered to him prior to the issuance of the TRO, and indicated he no longer owned those weapons.
- A subsequent weapons trace conducted by the United States Department of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives indicated, however, that Curtis remained the registered owner of the subject handguns.
On December 11th of last year, authorities say Curtis filed a report with the Little Egg Harbor Police Department that said three guns were stolen from his unlocked personal vehicle that was in front of his home.
[An] investigation further revealed that one of those handguns he reported stolen was one of the weapons he claimed to have sold prior to the issuance of the TRO. That same weapon was recovered from a defendant accused of a motor vehicle theft and eluding in Essex County, New Jersey.
On Valentine's Day, Curtis was processed at the Ocean County Sheriff’s Office and released on a summons pending a future appearance in superior court.
He has also been suspended with pay from his position with the Island Heights Police Department.
The public is reminded that charges are accusations and all persons are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.