Union City police open investigation into Route 495 off-duty security details

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The Union City Police Department has opened an internal investigation into Route 495 off-duty security details in the midst of allegations that officers have left their shifts early and/or submitted “inaccurate detail slips.” 

Photo via Google Maps.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

“Allegations of personnel leaving the 495 DOT Detail early and submitting inaccurate details slips have been brought to my attention. These allegations are under investigation,” Police Chief Nichelle Luster said in a memo sent out yesterday.

“Detail personnel are reminded that DOT contracted for and is paying for four hours of detail coverage. Additionally, that when Detail Officers and Desk Supervisors affix their signature to a detail slip, they are attesting to the accuracy of the slip. Please be guided accordingly.”

The Record reported in August that the New Jersey Department of Transportation had agreed to pay $58 an hour for each four-hour detail.

The details were made available for the local police departments in Secaucus, Weehawken, North Bergen and Union City, the four municipalities where 495 runs through.

In neighboring Jersey City, nearly a dozen officers have pleaded guilty to charges related to being paid for no-show off-duty security details, including former Police Chief Philip Zacche.

As a result, the city has abolished the program, to the chagrin of many officers who had no role in the corruption scandal.

Luster and a spokesman for the DOT did not immediately return emails seeking comment.

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