New Jersey Officer Charged After Allegedly Pulling Gun in Bar Confrontation

Bergen County officer David Vargas, 27, of Hackensack has been indicted on assault and weapons charges after a confrontation outside of a bar.


Vargas was drinking at the Cornerstone Bar in Hillsdale in the early hours when he got into an argument with bouncers and ultimately pointed his gun at two bouncers and told them to drop to the ground. Vargas was reportedly drunk and upset over that fact that there was a car blocking his car in the alley of the bar. He had gone into the bar to threaten to have the car towed and then had an argument with the bouncers. He retrieved his service weapon from the car and pointed it at the bouncers.

He has been suspended without pay.

He joined the department in July 2007.

It is a credit to the prosecutors that they brought the charges. We have seen other cases with less inspiring results (here and here).

Source: North Jersey

17 thoughts on “New Jersey Officer Charged After Allegedly Pulling Gun in Bar Confrontation”

  1. I love it how people on this board jump to conclusions. The officer “pointed his gun at two bouncers and told them to drop to the ground.” — that sounds like official police work. You people don’t see that?

    Bouncers are big men, aggressive, they work in a mind set of being authoritative and menacing and feel empowered to the point of feeling like they are the law.

    The officer “retrieved his service weapon from the car” — that sounds like an arrest was being made.

    Why was the officer telling large, menacing, aggressive, authoritative men, to get on the ground?

  2. puzzling:

    My use of the word “baggage” wasn’t meant to be mental,it means what ever this guy had been carrying around such as your post illustrated.

    “It’s about a growing mindset of exceptionalism among police and other government officials who increasingly feel that laws should not (and will not) apply to them. They feel confident in using the power of a kind of gang membership to rectify the slightest transgression against them regardless of whether it is in their job or private life. I see no sign of this trend reversing, and every sign that it will get much worse.”

  3. great, if new jersey fires this guy by next month he’ll be working at a police dept. here in florida.

  4. puzzling,

    Thanks. extraordinarily sobering.

    It almost appears that this type of
    homicide is practice for something
    big that is about to happen.

    Man, I just can’t believe what that
    child is going through.

    Any damn wonder why there is terrorism
    in the world???

  5. Anon Nurse – Thank you.

    Bud – Yes, I did see that story. There is an even more sobering write-up here. We are in deep trouble.

  6. puzzling wrote:

    This isn’t about mental baggage, drunkenness, rogue officers, or gun control.

    It’s about a growing mindset of exceptionalism among police and other government officials who increasingly feel that laws should not (and will not) apply to them. They feel confident in using the power of a kind of gang membership to rectify the slightest transgression against them regardless of whether it is in their job or private life. I see no sign of this trend reversing, and every sign that it will get much worse.

    ———————

    I couldn’t agree more… Well said.

    And Bud, thanks for the links and vid.

  7. I don’t agree with most of the comments here. This isn’t about mental baggage, drunkenness, rogue officers, or gun control.

    It’s about a growing mindset of exceptionalism among police and other government officials who increasingly feel that laws should not (and will not) apply to them. They feel confident in using the power of a kind of gang membership to rectify the slightest transgression against them regardless of whether it is in their job or private life. I see no sign of this trend reversing, and every sign that it will get much worse.

  8. Certain folks in Ohio are reading this story and saying, “Wow! That’s great news! Let’s have more of that!”

    http://www.dispatchpolitics.com/live/content/local_news/stories/2010/05/28/copy/guns-in-bars-are-closer-to-reality.html?sid=101

    I think that the first duty of every elected official in the US should be to pass laws that encourage more situations where people who are drinking also have guns! Why should the fun my relatives have in Arkansas during hunting season be limited in time or space?

  9. If the facts are as they are here…then the charges seem appropriate…..

  10. Frank, in our area Reserve and/or Auxiliary officers function exactly the same as regular officers. The difference is they are part time unpaid volunteers. They have to undergo the same psychological and medical screening, and receive the same or similar training as full time officers. Many Reserve officers have paid to put themselves through the police academy before they even apply to become a Reserve officer.

  11. It is about time rogue officers get hauled up for going over the top with aggression and bad judgment. If more departments did this, then there would not be as much bad PR for law enforcement. Guys like this cause problems for officers who just go to work, do their job and try to not get killed or wounded. The Philadelphia PD should pay attention to the way this was handled.

  12. Sounds like the bouncers were resiting arrest. They need to be charged!

    Heard a story on NPR this morning about the Police Reserve in LA; I found it kind of scarey that they carry firearms. I don’t think most reserve officers do that, do they?

  13. Knowing Hackensack area,IMHO this officer must be carrying “other”baggage for this to happen,plus the area where this altercation took place is not use to this type of thing happening in the town.

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