The Hoboken Police Department was one of just five in New Jersey to meet all the state mandates necessary for the public to report police misconduct, an investigation by the New Jersey Office of the State Comptroller found.
“The Hoboken Police Department has been committed and remains steadfast to building trust with the residents of, and visitors to our city,” Public Safety Director Ken Ferrante said in a statement.
“Chief Steven Aguiar, who was the department’s Internal Affairs commander when I was the police chief, is proving to be a leader when it comes to transparency and professionalism, and a visionary in this new era of policing.”
The OSC randomly selected 100 municipal police departments for a review of their websites and a new report of those findings shows that Hoboken fulfilled key requirements and best practices laid out in the Attorney General’s Internal Affairs Policies and Procedures, and corresponding Law Enforcement Directives, which govern the police disciplinary process.
The report also specifically commended the Hoboken PD for exemplary work on their website.
“The Hoboken Police Department’s website serves as an example of how an information sheet can be provided to the complainant at the time of the complaint, even when the complainant is filling out the form online. This department uploaded the information sheet and the standardized report form in all 11 languages,” the report says.
“Clicking on the link for the form in the selected language leads you to both the department’s information sheet, which is similar to the sample information sheet, and a fillable version of the standardized report form. Once the form is completed, it appeared that the complainant would be able to submit it electronically to the department or choose to save the form and print a copy.”
The OSC also noted that the complainant has the option of filing via phone, in person, or online, with the ability to do so anonymously as well.
“The entire department strives not only serve and protect the community, but to constantly improve relations and trust between our officers and the public,” added Aguiar.
“This report is just more evidence of the dedication our officers, staff and administration have toward being transparent, well-balanced and fair.”
Mayor Ravi Bhalla also commended the department, Ferrante, and Aguiar for outstanding work.
“The recognition received in this report proves once again that Hoboken is ahead of the curve and leading the way when it comes to building better community-police relationships, creating fair policing policies, and promoting accountability.”
The other four departments to be recognized by the OSC in this matter are the police departments in Neptune City, Oceanport, Monroe Township, and Spring Lake.