BLOOMFIELD, NJ - Fourteen new officers will protect and serve the residents of Bloomfield following an official ceremony Friday night that also saw 10 officers being promoted including one to the rank of Deputy Chief.

Public Safety Director Samuel DeMaio told TAPinto Bloomfield that the new officers will be an asset to the community. He added that this will continue the trend of a overall reduction in crime and improvement in the quality of life for everyone. According to DeMaio, the township has "had consistent reductions in 2015 2016. And 2017." 

While DeMaio noted the quality of life gains for the residents of Bloomfield, in his opening remarks, Bloomfield Mayor Michael Venezia noted the sacrifices families make for the township. He specifically pointed out that new officers will give up holidays and important family time. Later in the program, DeMaio reiterated those sacrifices that the families make for the township. 

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Assemblyman Ralph Caputo noted the changes in the environment of the Bloomfield Police Department since DeMaio joined the department. He quickly pointed out the faith the current township administration has in the department 

"Bravery, Pride and Dedication' cannot ring truer than with this department," said Township Adminstrater Matt Watkins, The administrator recognized dignitaries in attendance including the State PBA President, Councilman Nick Joanow, and newly appointed Councilman Rich Rockwell from the podium. 

Each day, these officers will make decisions and engage in actions that will affect the lives of he people on the street.  In describing a day serving the people of Bloomfield, DeMaio said any tour of duty can have you being hugged and embraced by the community, or being assaulted.

The new officers all graduated from the Essex County Police Academy this fall. The sworn in officers are Bartosz Piatkowski, Suzanne Looges, Patrick Nimer, Daniel Freid, Ryan Vogel, Justin Smith, Eric Capito, Michael Cumming, Damian Sorrentino, Godson Noel, Jeffrey Koeck, Joseph Rivera, Tyler Ferrentino and Jonathan Heussler.

Four Police Officers were promoted to the rank of Sergeant: Dominick Sodano, George Bambera, Jeffrey Alfonso and Chad Smith. Three were promoted to the rank of Lieutenant: Michael Moleski, Thomas Icolari and Naomi Zepeda. Gary Peters and Vincent Kerney were promoted to Captains, and Sean Schwindt was promoted to Deputy Chief of Police, making him the first Deputy Chief since 2005.

“Bloomfield residents are lucky to have outstanding police officers keeping us and our families safe. On behalf of the entire Bloomfield Township Council, I am proud to welcome 14 new officers to our community,” said Mayor Venezia. “The leadership that begins with Director DeMaio, and extends to Deputy Chief Schwindt, empowers the entire Bloomfield Police Department to do excellent work that has lead to decreases in violent crime each of the last three years and counting.”

“Each and every one of the men and women joining the Bloomfield Police Department are committing themselves to the safety of Bloomfield and our surrounding towns’ residents. They have taken a pledge to follow due process, and handle themselves in accordance with our department’s high standards. I have the utmost confidence in their abilities to do so,” said Director DeMaio. “Sergeants Sodano, Bambera, Alfonso and Smith, Lieutenants Moleski, Icolari and Zepeda, and Captains Peters and Kerney have all demonstrated professionalism in their many years with our department, and will bring their experience to their new posts. Lastly, I want to congratulate Deputy Chief Schwindt on his promotion to his new position, where I am confident he will continue to lead by example.”

Each of the men and women receiving promotions had friends or family members pin their new badges on them, and were sworn in by Mayor Venezia.

Related story: 2017 Bloomfield Crime Statistics Show Crime Down

TAPinto Bloomfield is the only locally owned news organization in the township. TAPinto Bloomfield is accredited by the New Jersey Press Association.

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