Hillsborough police Sgt. Timothy Brewer is accused of breaking into a business center and a self-storage company to finance a drug habit. Some town residents were stunned to learn a member of their police force has landed behind bars.
"Police officers are someone you're supposed to look up to and look to for protection," resident Eva Kennedy said. "How can you get protected by someone like that?"
Brewer is also accused of stealing on the job at the Hillsborough Police Department. Police say he took cocaine and $4,000 in cash that was kept under lock and key in an evidence room. He is also accused of stealing guns and $60 from another cop.
"He should be sent to prision. Pay for his crime, just like anyone else," resident Nathan Parker said.
Brewer's arrest could help other defendants get off the hook. He is supposed to testify in 29 upcoming cases, mostly for petty crimes. Officials say the cases in which Brewer played a minor role will go forward, but others could get tossed out of court.
"In other cases like DWIs or resisting arrest where he's the only witness, the case is over if he's not available," Orange County District Attorney Carl Fox said.
Fox said he does not think he will have to reopen any old cases involving Brewer.
Brewer, who has been suspended from the Police Department without pay, faces nine charges. If convicted, the eight-year veteran of the Police Department could spend years in prison.
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