Planet Princeton

Mercer Prosecutor’s Office Will Not File Charges Against Princeton Parking Meter Enforcement Officers

IMG_3419The Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office announced this afternoon  that charges will not be filed against the two Princeton parking enforcement officers related to the trade of food and other goods with some downtown businesses in exchange for not issuing parking tickets.

Two representatives from the prosecutor’s office met in closed session with Princeton officials last night to discuss the case. A spokeswoman for the prosecutor’s office said the office can’t discuss the specifics of that meeting. The office issued a statement to the press explaining why charges are not being filed.

Enforcement officer Chris Boutote was placed on unpaid leave and was terminated by the town after an investigation regarding the matter.

“In light of the proofs in the case, Mr. Boutote’s age and lack of prior record, our office determined that his likely sentence would have been admittance into a pretrial intervention program conditioned upon job forfeiture,” Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office Spokeswoman Casey DeBlasio wrote in an email to reporters. “This was accomplished through Mr. Boutote’s termination by Princeton, and our office felt that prosecution would not serve the interest of justice.”

Enforcement officer Jon Hughes was placed on four weeks of unpaid leave during the investigation and was then demoted.

“With regard to Mr. Hughes, our office agreed that he was appropriately addressed through Princeton’s administrative channels,” DeBlasio wrote.

Planet Princeton broke the story detailing how employees of some downtown businesses were able to park at expired meters and in two-hour zones all day without receiving parking tickets in exchange for food and other goods. More than 16 cars were observed on Humbert Street and Greenview Avenue, for example, displaying menus and other items from local eateries on the dashboards. Those cars were never ticketed, yet residents who parked too long in the two-hour parking zones were aggressively ticketed, and there were often no spaces for the residents or their guests because of all the employee cars parked on the streets.

Krystal Knapp

Krystal Knapp is the founding editor of Planet Princeton. She can be reached via email at editor AT planetprinceton.com. Send all letters to the editor and press releases to that email address.

7 comments

  • Actually, Their is ONLY one part-timer meter person and the Police are to fill in the rest of the thousands of tickets and revenue that both Full Time meter guys made for this town over the years~~so actually, the town is losing thousands of dollars a day as the PD must be busy with other calls and emergencies I would think…

  • Its finally over. Time to move on to the next headache that will come Princeton’s way. Any idea what happened to the council person calling 911? Did the prosecutors office work on that one yet?

  • I’d love to see an update on the affected streets and to know whether there is plenty of parking now that the business owners and workers scam with the parking authority has been brought to light.

  • It would seem that the crime of bribery consists of two violations, both the person accepting the bribe and the person offering it.

    Seems like this is only half the story. By not prosecuting the officials, no crime exists? How convenient.

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