Will ex-Warminster cop face new charges in sex abuse case? 'Concerning content' on cell phone

A former Warminster police officer accused of sexually abusing five boys starting 30 years ago, could be facing new criminal charges now that Bucks County authorities have cracked the passcode on his iPhone.

Bucks County First District Attorney Jennifer Schorn revealed Thursday during a pretrial motions hearing that Bucks County Detectives had gained access to a cellphone for former D.A.R.E. officer James C. Carey.

The detectives had been trying to crack the password-protected phone since it was seized two years ago as part of an investigation into decades-old child sex allegations involving Carey, 54, of Cape May Courthouse, New Jersey.

Detectives found 100 gigabytes of data on the phone which has been extracted, and currently authorities are reviewing the content, Schorn said.

The prosecutor did not say what type of material had been found on the phone, but she stated it could result in new charges for Carey once the review is complete, which could take one or two weeks.

Former Warminster Police Officer James Carey is accused of sexually abusing five boys during his time with the department, according to the Bucks County District Attorney's Office.
Former Warminster Police Officer James Carey is accused of sexually abusing five boys during his time with the department, according to the Bucks County District Attorney's Office.

But Schorn hinted to Bucks County Judge Wallace Bateman Jr., who is overseeing the trial, that some material reviewed so far is “pretty concerning content,” though nothing yet chargeable.

Carey is scheduled to go on trial Oct. 31 on more than 100 counts of child sexual abuse in a case that went before a Bucks County investigating grand jury, which recommended charges against Carey last year.

Bateman set a Monday deadline for attorneys to get back to him about whether the cellphone data discovery will require a continuance for the upcoming trial.

While the former police officer may face new charges, some of the original charges against him have been dropped.

The DA's office is no longer pursuing 22 misdemeanor counts of official oppression and unlawful contact with a minor against Carey, citing an expired statute of limitations, Schorn said at the Thursday hearing.

Carey has been incarcerated since his April 2021 arrest; most recently he was being held in Delaware County’s jail as part of a prison exchange, but on Thursday Bateman did not oppose his request to return to Bucks County jail.

Court documents allege that Carey sexually abused children in his care from 1987 until 2000. He worked briefly for North Wales and Warwick police departments before landing in Warminster in 1989.

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His duties included working as the D.A.R.E. officer at Log College Middle School, where he met and befriended his alleged victims, many who had difficult home situations and brushes with law enforcement, according to court documents.

Carey was also involved in other community activities, involving the Warminster Fire Department, Warminster Recreation Center and the Boy Scouts of America.

Authorities have alleged Carey would use his position as a police officer to get close to his victims, who were all young boys, and gain their trust.

His victims, who are now in their 30s and 40s, have previously testified that the alleged abuse occurred while Carey was on duty as a police officer.

Warminster and the Bucks County District Attorney’s Office investigated Carey for allegations of inappropriate conduct with minors in 2001 and 2006, but did not have enough evidence to file criminal charges.

Warminster supervisors fired Carey in 2005 after an internal investigation found his conduct at the scene of a domestic call months earlier had violated “multiple” department policies. He was ordered rehired in 2006 after filing a grievance with the police union and binding arbitration in his favor, but it does not appear that he resumed working as an officer.

He was fired a second time in 2007, and township supervisors quietly approved his retirement in 2009.

Bucks County Detectives and the DA reopened the investigation into Carey’s alleged sexual abuse in 2020, after one his victims came forward and reported it to Warminster police.

This article originally appeared on Bucks County Courier Times: Ex-Warminster cop could face new charges in child sex abuse case