A 17-year veteran of the New York City Police Department pled not guilty Thursday to charges that he supplied police paraphernalia and weapons to a stickup crew, which then used the equipment to rob drug dealers.
Officer Jose Tejada is accused of involvement in a string of
2006 and 2007 robberies in which he is alleged to have provided
NYPD badges, uniforms and even police vehicles to a group of
thieves. Tejada, 45, who had been assigned to police Harlem, was in
uniform and on duty at the time of at least one of his alleged
He’s been connected to three of the more than one hundred robberies the crew is supposedly behind, with some dating back to 2001. Tejada is charged with conspiracy to commit robbery, conspiracy to distribute drugs including heroin, cocaine, MDMA, and marijuana, as well as an unlawful use of a firearm charge, according to local NY1 news.
Prosecutors say Tejada was caught in an “ongoing Internal
Affairs Bureau investigation” and has been suspended from the
department after holding a family of three at gunpoint while his
colleagues searched their home.
He also is accused of checking the legal status of other robbers
in the gang and letting them know when it was safe to flee then
reenter the United States.
“Obviously it is sad and disappointing anytime a police
officer is arrested,” said NYPD commissioner Ray Kelly.
Tejada is the second officer to be charged as part of the
robbery crew, which began in 2001 and has “netted more than 250
kilograms of cocaine and $1 million in narcotics proceeds,”
prosecutors told the Times.
Emmanuel Tavarez, an eight-year veteran of the force, was
sentenced to 25 years in prison in May 2012 after being convicted
of similar crimes. Twenty other members have been implicated in the