BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (WTNH) – Former State Trooper Aaron Huntsman is sentenced to five years behind bars with one year mandatory after he stole a gold chain, crucifix, and nearly $4,000 from a dying man.
Back in September 2012, Huntsman responded to a motorcycle wreck on the Merritt Parkway in Fairfield County. While EMT’s tried to save John Scalesse’s, 45, life they gave Huntsman the cross and chain for safekeeping.
Then, prosecutors said his own dashboard camera caught him taking the cash to his car. When the Scalesse family asked about the belongings, he lied saying he didn’t know where they were according to the prosecutor. Pictures showed he even wedged the money underneath the front seat of his cruiser.
Scalesse’s mother Marguerite recounted when she saw her son later that night.
“I leaned over and kissed my son’s still handsome face. I petted his beautiful hair. I told him how much I loved him and how proud I was to be his mother not knowing at this time that my son’s belongings were stashed under the passenger seat of Huntsman’s cruiser,” said Marguerite Scalesse in court.
Huntsman apologized through tears,”I just want the court, the family, and those present here that care about me to know that the man that stands here today deserves to be punished.” He continued,”I’m truly sorry for everything, the pain the suffering…not even realizing the symbol of the crucifix caused so much hurt.”
Outside of court, Scalesse’s mother said she didn’t believe his apology.
“The fact that he lied to me three times in the morgue makes me say of course it’s not real,” said Marguerite. She said, “This officer, to extend a hand of crime when it should have been a hand of comfort is tormenting.”
Huntsman’s attorney said his client served in the military 20 years, then became a State Trooper, and he even received awards for heroic acts while on the force. He said it was his Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and addiction to alcohol and pain medications that led him to steal.
Family members said they hope this criminal act doesn’t cloud John’s legacy.
John’s lifelong girlfriend said, “I would just like them to remember how sweet and loving and fun loving and life loving and happy he was as a person not remember him for this.”
As a part of his sentence the judge ordered him to substance abuse and mental health treatment. Plus, he as to do community service.