Lakewood Police Officer Accused Of Causing Crash While On Phone

A Lakewood police officer, the Lakewood Police Department, and Lakewood Township itself is being sued over a 2021 accident in the township that a woman claims left her with permanent damages.

According to court documents, on July 26, 2021, a collision occurred at the intersection of New Hampshire Avenue and Route 70, involving a Little Egg Harbor resident, Shirley Darbo, and an off-duty Lakewood police officer.

Darbo was driving on New Hampshire Avenue, heading west toward the intersection with Route 70. The traffic light was green in her favor, and she proceeded to cross Route 70. The officer, who was driving an unmarked police car, was driving eastbound on Route 70. Apparently missing the red light at the New Hampshire/Route 70 intersection, the officer’s vehicle collided with Darbo’s.

Darbo says the crash caused injuries that led to “permanent loss of earnings” and significant medical expenses. She also says the accident caused her pain and suffering, depriving her of the enjoyment of life to a great extent.

The officer being sued said he was responding to an unspecified police department emergency at the time of the crash.

The plaintiff is demanding monetary compensation for her complaint, including any court and attorney fees incurred.


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  1. Will the Township taxpayers be on the hook for the legal fees incurred by the Township in fighting this lawsuit?

  2. Does this officer have a name? Are we entitled to know? Can you publish police report? This is a serious concern. Why are officers taking home unmarked cars off duty. Which town do these officers live in? What did the AG say about this officer involved accident? Please show us internal affairs investigation!


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