D.A.: Cop committed perjury in two cases

Posted: March 09, 2014

A VETERAN Philadelphia cop was charged with committing perjury in separate court cases, the District Attorney's Office announced yesterday.

>Officer Steven Lupo had been the subject of long-running investigations involving the D.A.'s Special Investigations Unit, police Internal Affairs, and a local grand jury.

Lupo, 36, who had been on the force for six years, was suspended by Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey for 30 days with the intent to dismiss.

He worked in the 14th District in Germantown.

In addition to the two felony counts of perjury, Lupo was charged with false swearing in official matters, unsworn falsification, false reports to law enforcement and obstructing administration of law.

The D.A.'s office said Lupo lied while testifying in Municipal Court about the Sept. 25, 2010, arrests of Joseph Tuamba and Angel Huffman.

Lupo testified that he went to inspect a Lincoln MKS that the two men were sitting inside of on East Chelten Avenue near Kenyon Street, because the windows on the car were tinted.

When he got close to the vehicle, he claimed he smelled marijuana. Tuamba and Huffman were both charged with possessing narcotics.

But three witnesses - including an agency operator from the Avis Rent-a-Car that owned the Lincoln - testified that the windows weren't tinted at all, the D.A.'s office said.

The charges against the men were withdrawn, court records show.

Investigators found Lupo also lied while testifying about the Aug. 5, 2011, arrest of Amiraria Farsi.

In that case, Lupo claimed that he and another officer noted a "huge odor of marijuana" when they stopped the Buick Regal that Farsi was driving near Baynton and High streets.

Farsi allegedly had narcotics and cash in his pockets, and was charged with three drug-related offenses.

Lupo stated that he waited for a search warrant and for a K9 Unit to arrive at the scene before he inspected the Buick's trunk.

But footage recorded by a nearby surveillance camera showed that Lupo had searched the car and the trunk before the warrant was approved and before the K9 arrived, the D.A.'s office said.

The charges against Farsi were withdrawn, according to court records.

On Twitter: @dgambacorta

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