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Police Chief Demands Nazareth Councilman's Resignation

Nazareth's police chief says Larry Stoudt not only attempted to obstruct a state police investigation, but also glimpsed a confidential informant involved in a drug investigation.

Nazareth's police chief has demanded the vice president of Nazareth Borough Council resign from his post amidst allegations he obstructed a state police investigation, according to a report in The Express-Times.

In a letter written Nov. 27, the report states, Police Chief Thomas Trachta said Councilman Larry Stoudt jeopardized a case when he entered police headquarters on May 24 uninvited. Stoudt saw a confidential informant involved in a drug investigation, which caused the informant to end his cooperation.

The borough paid $3,000 to install security keypads to prevent unauthorized entry into the station, according to the report.

Two days after Trachta issued his letter, a Patch reporter asked Stoudt about his future plans.

"I plan to stay right here," he said after Council's Nov. 29 workshop.

Stoudt was charged Oct. 9 with allegedly trying to interfere with a state police undercover investigation. According to a criminal complaint, he allegedly asked Trachta to run the driver's license of a suspected liquor enforcement officer in an attempt to protect the local American Legion post from undercover, prying eyes.

The complaint said Stoudt approached Trachta with his request at the borough police station May 24, exactly one month after the state police Liquor Enforcement Office executed a search warrant on the Nazareth Jacksonian Club.

Stoudt waived his preliminary hearing Nov. 21 on a charge of criminal attempt – obstruction of law or government.

Stoudt reportedly plans to apply for the Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (ARD) program for first-time offenders. Assistant District Attorney Connie Nelson said her office would not oppose Stoudt’s application.

At his preliminary hearing, District Judge Jackie Taschner of Palmer Township ordered Stoudt to say out of the borough police station.

Asked if he had anything to say to borough residents, Stoudt said the next time he plans to comment is at his formal arraignment in Northampton County Court on Jan. 10.

Ben Miller December 10, 2012 at 03:40 PM
Talk about putting himself before the best interests of the borough. I don't know Larry Stoudt, know nothing of his past, but the man just admitted to breaking the law using his position as a Councilman to facilitate his crime. He should be removed from the Council by the other Council members if possible and by the voters through impeachment, if necessary. The fact that he would make his fellow Councilmen or the citizens of Nazareth Borough go through all of that, along with the public humiliation for Nazareth that it would surely bring, shows exactly what he thinks of Nazareth. Here's hoping that the Mayor and people on Council show a spine and boot him off, before he drags Nazareth through the mud any further...
Arthur December 10, 2012 at 05:22 PM
No public official should be allowed to use the Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (ARD) program. A crime by a public official, especially an elected official, is worse than a crime committed by anyone else. A public official is given the trust of the people and a violation of that trust is extremely despicable and as a minimum should rerquire jail time.
rick troxell December 10, 2012 at 09:10 PM
Chief Trachta did exactly what a professional law enforcement officer should do in this situation. No politics. The Law. I believe if he does not resign the only way he can be ousted is by the govenor of the state. And politics being politics that could take a long time. At the very least this shows our Chief has Integrity and knows the Law. Now instead of giving an outside police dept the resonsibility of protecting the Bourough at a cost over 200,000.00 more than the council gives our own dept, I say give the chief the money and reigns and see the outcome. 24/7 365 days a year
Kaos8 December 10, 2012 at 10:46 PM
You go Trachta! I hope his article is enough to bring enough attention from higher up. This is one more "hot poker" to the behind, and maybe just enough to get the gov's office to send "fact- finders" out..and really find out what is going on in town...I am sure that not just Stoudt is going to be looked at and scrutinized. Long Time Coming Boys and Girls! Times are changing, hopefully!
alivettg December 10, 2012 at 11:06 PM
Agreed! Was to show that real authority has backbone and morals! Question is.... Just excactly why did this informant BAIL, after seeing Stoudt in the police dept?!?! Hopefully the DA can further investigate by asking that informant for more info. Now, to just hope the Governor sees the seriousness of the corruption of this town.
Susan Derr Kirk December 11, 2012 at 05:56 AM
looks like macungie found a sister city!

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