STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (WTAJ) — Thousands of dollars are coming out of the Borough of State College’s pocket after a legal battle where the borough defended against the reinstatement of a police officer.
According to borough spokesperson Kayla Lafferty, the borough has incurred $130,252.24 defending against a grievance filed by the Borough of State College Police Association.
In Dec. 2020, Officer Joseph Scharf was fired from the police department after three internal complaints focusing on speeding, failure to report a high-speed chase and an incident involving pepper spray during a routine traffic stop, according to court documents.
The statement by Lafferty read, “Mr. Scharf has returned to employment and is currently participating in a retraining program with the State College Police Department.”
A ruling by arbitrator Kathleen Jones Spilker ordered Scharf be reinstated with seniority, back pay and benefits.
The borough attempted to appeal the grievance twice and failed both times.
Lafferty’s statement continued with, “Currently, the Borough does not have any final numbers on the back pay.”
If the borough wants to petition the State Supreme Court for a third time, Lafferty said they have until Nov. 6 to do so. She said at this time the borough doesn’t have any immediate comment on whether it will file.