The North Bergen Police Department swore in nine new officers during a Town Hall ceremony earlier this afternoon. Sponsored content.
“Like I said the last time, every month or so we’re doing promotions and we’re hiring new police. This is the leadership that town’s been taking under our great chief here,” said Commissioner of Public Safety Allen Pascual.
“It’s really a pleasure to work with these guys, I welcome the new officers – I think this is the most Bruins graduates I’ve seen – it’s good stuff. It’s good stuff when the people from North Bergen … working in a community where you know your neighborhood and you know the people around you.”
State Senator (D-32)/North Bergen Mayor Nick Sacco revealed that the township remains staunch in their residency policy, with some potential officers being dismissed after it was found out they were using the addresses of friends and family members.
“The residency requirement that we have is really important: it helps us keep the community stable … a couple of them wouldn’t be here now if it weren’t for the due diligence of Bob Dowd, our chief, and his staff, making sure that all were legitimate residents,” said Sacco.
“There were people who got on the list, passed the test and not lived here: they used addresses of neighbors and friends and our police department sought out each and every one, eliminated them from the list, and these are the nine that are remaining.”
After the swearing in, Dowd thanked the families for their continued support as the nine officers head to the academy, noting that the sacrifice is worth it in the end.
“Listen, it’s a great day for you, it’s a great day for your family, one of the instructors told us once, in the academy, ‘this job’s like hitting the lottery.’ Right, it’s like hitting the lottery,” recalled Dowd.
“And it’s true, because once you’re here, and you start earning you’re way, and you start moving up – they may be at a relatively modest pay scale today – but they’re eventually gonna make some very good money here. You’re never gonna be rich, they told us, but you’re never gonna be poor.
The nine new officers are Joshua Nazario, Jose Villalta, Kayla Muniz, Jeffrey Vega, Matthew Appell, Samantha Sexton, Kevin Barrios, Lazaro Rivero and Brendan Bowen.
Vega and Bowen are transfers from the Hudson County Sheriff’s Office, while Rivero came from the Newark Police Department.