The Atlantic City police officer at the center of a criminal investigation has been identified as a longtime sergeant and the stepson of state Sen. Jim Whelan.

Whelan confirmed Saturday that Sgt. Richard Halvorson III, who joined the force in 1994, has been suspended. The former Atlantic City mayor declined to comment further on the investigation.

"We don't comment on these things until they run their course," he said.

On Friday, Mayor Lorenzo Langford confirmed that an officer was the target of an investigation, but would release no further details.

The sergeant is on the city's Bomb Squad, which his father — a retired captain — headed years ago. He was promoted to sergeant in 2001.

Halvorson was most recently in the news when he was injured going through a plate glass window while apprehending an armed robbery suspect. Last April, he captured a man who had led police on a car chase that went onto the Boardwalk and injured an officer. Halvorson followed the suspect onto the Atlantic City Expressway and made the arrest when the man stopped to pay the toll.

On Thursday, an FBI spokesman referred a Press of Atlantic City reporter to the Atlantic County Prosecutor's Office for comment. The Prosecutor's Office is not commenting at this time, as no criminal charges have been filed.

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