A law enforcement career path never crossed my mind until I was about 29! I had been in NJ working for the record company for about three years. I was newly married and totally fed up with my job. A friend suggested taking the police civil service test. I did and I passed. I left the record company and started the police academy at the age of thirty. My mother did not talk to me for four months. I served in uniformed patrol for the first 20 years. During that period I was on the short lived scuba diving team (I pulled out one body) and became a certified emergency driving instructor for the police academy. I then went to the housing projects as a community police officer. From there, it was found that I had a talent for arresting prostitutes. For two years I did vice work, dealing mostly with prostitution and a little bit in narcotics. It was the most fun I ever had!. My partner and I had over 500 arrests and closed down several houses of ill repute during that two year period.
Then I finally passed the sergeant's exam with a score high enough to get appointed. I was back in uniform but now assigned to the radio room. I was in charge of the civilian dispatchers on the day tour and had every chief and captain looking over my shoulder and second guessing my decisions for the next three years. My job description was me telling people where to go and they telling me where to go! Then, a little over a year ago, I was transferred to the Internal Affairs Unit. Now I work with another sergeant, a lieutenant and a captain investigating civilian complaints against police personnel. We report directly to the chief of police. It's a good group.
My wife, Karen, of 30 years and I have two sons. It was an honor for me to give my sons; Jimmy and David, their first salutes when they graduated form the police academy and joined me on the Elizabeth Police Department.