TRENTON, NJ - A New Jersey state trooper from Bayonne faces up to five years in prison after being charged for allegedly stalking a female motorist in his patrol vehicle while on duty. 

According to New Jersey Attorney Gurbir Grewal, on January 28 Trooper Michael Patterson conducted a motor vehicle stop of a female motorist on the New Jersey Turnpike at approximately 9:30 p.m. Patterson let the woman go with a warning, but he allegedly conducted a second, unwarranted stop of her vehicle a few minutes later when she exited the Turnpike at Exit 11

Patterson conducted the second motor vehicle stop, investigators believe, in order to make unwanted advances on the woman. Patterson allegedly disabled the Digital In-Vehicle Recorder (DIVR) in his vehicle to prevent his conduct from being recorded during this second stop. It is further alleged that Patterson subsequently put the victim in fear by following her to her home in his patrol vehicle.

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Charges against Patterson include Crime of Deprivation of Civil Rights, Stalking, and Tampering with Public Records.

The New Jersey State Police Office of Professional Standards initially investigated this matter and referred it to the Corruption Bureau within the Office of Public Integrity and Accountability, which filed the criminal charges Friday and is prosecuting the case.

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