Cusack Avoids Jail With Plea Deal in Beach Tag Office Sex Case

first_imgCharles “Chuck” Cusack served as an Ocean City police officer for 25 years and later managed beach tag operations in Ocean City.On the morning of his scheduled trial on sexual assault and official misconduct charges, a former Ocean City beach tag director accepted a plea agreement that will keep him out of jail.Charles E. Cusack, 52, pleaded guilty to criminal sexual contact and official misconduct in Cape May County Superior Court on Monday (Nov. 2).In exchange, Cusack will receive no prison sentence. He will be on probation for three to five years, will forfeit public office and will register as a sex offender under Megan’s Law.Final sentencing is scheduled for 8:45 a.m. Dec. 18. The victim and her mother plan to make statements at that time, according to Assistant Cape May County Prosecutor Dara Paley.Cusack was charged in August 2012 with one count of second-degree sexual assault. A retired Ocean City police officer who was later hired to direct the city’s beach fee operations, Cusack allegedly had an ongoing sexual relationship with a female beach-tag inspector, who was then 17.Cusack also faces an ongoing civil lawsuit filed by the victim. The lawsuit alleges Cusack helped the girl land a plum summer job with the city’s beach fee office, and then used his position of authority to sway her into a sexual relationship. The City of Ocean City is also named as a defendant in the civil suit.Cusack had sex with the girl both in his city office and at his home in Egg Harbor Township on various occasions, according to the civil and criminal complaints.In New Jersey, the age of consent is 16. But Cusack was charged under a provision in state statute that makes it illegal for a person to have sex with someone over whom he or she has supervisory authority when an alleged victim is 16 or 17 years old.In February 2015, a Cape May County grand jury handed up a superseding indictment adding a second-degree charge of official misconduct and a second-degree count of endangering the welfare of a child against Cusack.Cusack on Monday pleaded guilty to fourth-degree criminal sexual contact and second-degree official misconduct. The state will waive a mandatory minimum prison sentence on the second-degree charge, according to Paley.Cusack consented to the plea agreement in a brief proceeding before Judge John C. Porto on Monday. He appeared in court with his attorney, Louis Barbone._______ Get the Daily. Sign up for free email updates._______Cusack served 25 years in the Ocean City Police Department before retiring in May 2011. Cusack was in his second season as director of the city’s beach-tag program when he was arrested. He has been free since posting $150,000 bond shortly after his arrest. He was suspended from the job after his arrest.As a sex offender, Cusack will have to register with public agencies in New Jersey, acknowledge that his image may appear on public websites, notify law enforcement any time he moves or changes jobs, and notify law enforcement if he has access to the Internet, among other requirements.Read more:Alleged Sex Assault Victim Sues Ocean City and Former Beach-Tag BossProsecutor: Former Beach Tag Boss Had Sex With Teen in City Officelast_img read more

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