Former Mercer County officer accused of stealing from Oil City police

T.J. Burke faces a felony theft charge

T.J. Burke is charged with felony theft in Oil City, Pa.
Photo courtesy of the Sharon Herald.

OIL CITY, Pa. (WKBN) – A former local police officer is now on the wrong side of the law, charged with stealing from others in law enforcement.

Police said T.J. Burke, 33, of Mars, Pa., failed to pay out funds made through his Officers Down 5k events. He faces a felony theft charge.

Burke, at one time, worked for the old Southwest Regional Police in Mercer County. He founded his foundation, Officers Down 5k, in Hermitage.

Police in Oil City said Burke coordinated a Glow Run/Walk and Children’s Day event for their city. The Oil City Police Department and volunteers solicited over $13,000 for the event.

Police said Burke was responsible for collecting and distributing those funds. A portion of the proceeds was to be donated to a charity for the families of officers who had given their lives in the service of others.

Police allege that Burke never provided information on where the donation would go, despite several requests from the department.

Burke only sent the city $250 of the $2,300 owed to them from the event, according to police.

Police said in a breakdown of revenues and expenditures provided by Burke, he noted that he paid $1,041 for a timing service, but police said that company was never paid. In addition, police said the cost for services was only $400, not the $1,041 that Burke noted.

Police said due to these reasons, they believe that Burke was trying to deceive them to steal money.

WKBN reached out to Burke’s attorney who hasn’t yet responded to the allegations made against his client.


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