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Former Weatherly police officer placed on probation

Published July 02. 2010 05:00PM

A former Weatherly police officer, who pleaded guilty in March to one count of corruption of a minor, was placed on probation Thursday in Carbon County court.

Anthony James McFadden, 49, of Weatherly, was placed on 18 months probation by Senior Judge Richard W. Webb. In imposing the sentence, Webb told McFadden, "There is no penalty I can impose that will punish you more than you have already been punished."

McFadden, a longtime officer for the borough serving more than 25 years, was charged by state police at Hazleton with making phone calls and sending e-mail messages to a then 15-year-old female. Troopers said the calls and messages were sexual in nature. The messages, troopers added, had McFadden making sexual comments and making lewd suggestions about sexual acts to the girl. McFadden never made any type of physical contact with the girl, troopers noted.

Attorney Cindy Ray, who said she knew McFadden for a long time, had to choke back tears in telling the court of the public service McFadden had provided over the years to his community, serving both as a fireman, ambulance responder and a police officer.

Ray told Webb, "He has lost everything." She said he even needed a ride to the courthouse for the sentencing. He had gotten employment at an area industrial park, but she added that he is almost "destitute."

McFadden, who resigned from the force on March 30, the day he entered his plea, apologized to the court and "mostly the residents of my community."

Trooper James Surmick said McFadden cooperated fully with troopers and when first confronted with the charges, admitted his guilt.

Webb said McFadden did serve his community well up to the time of the incidents, which occurred last year. But he added, "All the good you did will not be remembered, but what you did in this case will."

Webb said it was disturbing to the court that a person entrusted with withholding the law violates it.

Webb also ordered McFadden have no contact with the victim, get a mental health evaluation and follow any recommendation for treatment, submit to a sexual offenders evaluation and follow any recommendations, pay court costs and a $50 per month supervision fee.

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