A Brigantine Police officer will spend five years in prison after admitting he used his job to sexually assault a 16-year-old girl, officials announced Sunday.
Officer Ralph M. Pereira, 45, pleaded guilty Friday to official misconduct and sexual assault, according to the Atlantic County Prosecutor's Office.
He was arrested in 2014 and charged with using his job as a police officer "to obtain a benefit for himself, specifically sexual acts with a child," the prosecutor's office said.
Jay McKeen, a spokesman for the office, said Pereira had been suspended from the force since his arrest. He will be imprisoned for five years following a sentencing hearing on July 1, the office said.
Pereira will also have to register as a sex offender, the office said.
- Chris Palmer