Two police officers are under investigation for allegedly using their influence to skip a long line of shoppers waiting to buy the PlayStation 3 video game system the day it went on sale, authorities said.
On Nov. 17, witnesses said, a line of customers had formed outside the Sony store at the Providence Place Mall when two security guards allowed seven people to skip ahead of everyone else, WJAR-TV reported.
One of the seven people was a Providence police officer who later admitted skipping the line to his superiors, Providence Police Chief Dean Esserman said. The officer claimed he did not do anything wrong.
“I just beg to differ. We think he did something very wrong,” Esserman said. “He’s been identified and he’s going to be disciplined.”
Gene Riccio, a spokesman for the Providence Police Department, said he could not comment Thursday on potential punishments.
Another of the alleged line jumpers was a Warwick police officer, Warwick Police Chief Steve McCartney said.
“We’re conducting an internal investigation,” McCartney said. “If the facts bear out these allegations, we will take disciplinary action against the officer.”
Two security officers assigned to oversee the line of customers have been dismissed.
The nationwide introduction of the Sony game system was marked by rowdy crowds and store stampedes. One buyer waiting in line at a Connecticut store was shot by robbers. The two models cost $500 and $600 in the stores.