Scranton Police Officer Pleads Guilty To Federal Program Fraud In Connection With Overtime Patrol Shifts At Scranton Area Housing Complexes
HARRISBURG – Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite Jr. of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney John C. Gurganus for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, Assistant Director Luis Quesada of the FBI’s Criminal Investigative Division and Special Agent in Charge Russell W. Cunningham of the Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General (DOJ-OIG) Washington Field Office announce that a former veteran detective for the Carlisle, Pennsylvania, Police Department, who was a task force officer with the FBI and a member of the Cumberland County Drug Task Force, was sentenced today to 75 months in prison for bribery, drug distribution, and making false statements by United States District Court Judge Jennifer P. Wilson.
According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, Christopher Collare, 54, now of Blythewood, South Carolina, used his official position to obtain sex from two women in exchange for agreeing to take actions in prosecutions. Specifically, in 2015, Collare agreed to accept sex or money in exchange for not appearing at an evidentiary hearing so that a criminal charge would be dismissed. In 2018, Collare agreed to accept sexual favors in exchange for taking steps to help reduce a potential sentence. In addition to bribery, the jury convicted Collare of distributing heroin in 2016. He also was convicted of lying in November 2015 on a federal form he completed during the process of becoming an FBI task force officer, and of making multiple false statements when interviewed by federal agents in May 2018.
“A badge carries enormous responsibility along with the trust it confers,” said Special Agent in Charge Jacqueline Maguire. “Those who abuse that responsibility will find themselves on the wrong side of the law, facing the stark reality that crossing the line comes with punishment. Law enforcement officers at every level – local, state, federal – owe the public honest services free from bias or self-indulgent actions.”
“We rely on law enforcement officers to do their work with honesty and integrity. Instead, Collare exploited his official position, accepting bribes of sex and money in exchange for taking actions in prosecutions. Now, he will be held accountable for the bribery and lies,” said Russell W. Cunningham Special Agent in Charge of the Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General Washington Field Office.
The FBI’s Philadelphia Field Office Harrisburg Resident Agency and the Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General Washington Field Office investigated the case. Trial Attorney James I. Pearce of the Criminal Division’s Appellate Section (formerly with the Public Integrity Section) and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Carlo D. Marchioli and Phillip J. Caraballo of the Middle District of Pennsylvania prosecuted the case.