WYOMING, PENNSYLVANIA – A rookie cop’s career is on the rocks amid allegations he got boozed up and plowed his car into a pair of parked vehicles while off-duty near his home in Nanticoke.
John Urbanski, 20, has been suspended from a part-time position with the police force in Wyoming and has resigned from a “fill-in” role with the department in Newport Township, according to officials in those communities.
“We’re waiting to see the outcome,” Wyoming Mayor Bob Boyer said Tuesday after details of the June incident were made public.
Urbanski did not return a telephone message left at his home.
Urbanski, of 424 E. Grand St., told officers he slugged two beers and drank from a bottle of Coca-Cola that “must have had a mixed drink in it” before driving his car into a parked GMC Sierra pickup and a Honda Civic about 5:30 a.m., police said.
Police said the off-duty officer had a blood-alcohol content level of .16 at the time of the crash – twice the legal limit in Pennsylvania and eight times the limit for a person under 21.
The crash happened June 13, police said, but the charges, which include driving under the influence and underage drinking, only became public this week after Urbanski answered a summons mailed to his home.
Urbanski faces up to six months in jail but will likely be eligible for an Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition program, which is reserved for first-time offenders or defendants who have had clean criminal records for at least 10 years before their arrest. Completing the program would allow Urbanski to retain his police officer certification.
Urbanski also faces a suspension of his driver’s license.
Urbanski joined the Wyoming force after graduating from the Lackawanna County police academy in December 2010. After Urbanski’s arrest, the borough removed him from its work schedule, placed him in an employee-assistance program and ordered him to submit to a drug and alcohol evaluation, Boyer said.
Urbanski had only worked in Newport Township “one or two weeks” before the crash, Chief Rob Impaglia said. Urbanski immediately resigned and wrote a letter of apology, pre-empting potential disciplinary action by the township.
“He took the right steps,” Impaglia said.