"A case like this is like a sucker punch to your gut, it's the last thing you'd ever expect," Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman said.
Authorities say Sergeant Anthony Santoro, a 22-year-old veteran of the Conshohocken Borough Police, allegedly stole money collected from meters immediately following his assignments assisting the parking enforcement officer.
Santoro was arrested Tuesday and is suspended without pay.
"This was a system that was established to ensure that there was no theft, you have a police officer, a sergeant from the police department who is accompanying the officer in order to make sure everything is as it should be," Ferman said.
Authorities say the investigation began in July when the police chief saw Santoro attempt to secretly move a filled manila envelope from the police car to his own car. For months, the chief gathered information.
At least once, Santoro's wife was allegedly seen removing the envelope from her husband's personal car and leaving, but it's not clear if she was aware of what she was picking up.
Video surveillance was also captured which allegedly captured Santoro scooping handfuls of coins from the collection bins.
"It was a question of undertaking surveillance and making sure that something that looked bad didn't have an innocent explanation, but on the last day of surveillance, last Friday, unfortunately, the sergeant was caught red handed," Ferman said.
On Friday, a search of his vehicle uncovered $386.56, most of it in quarters.
Authorities aren't sure yet in total how much he allegedly took, but court documents say he admitted to 14 thefts.
Action News reached out to Santoro's attorney, but so far she declined comment. His next court date is scheduled for January 3rd.