DENVILLE, NJ – Denville police and members of the public will soon have a chance to succinctly express opinions about the Denville Police Department, which is being assessed by a police chiefs’ association for “accreditation.”
The department will be visited on June 4 by a team of assessors from the state Association of Chiefs of Police (NJSACOP), according to Denville Police Chief Christopher Wagner. The on-site assessment is needed to determine if the department complies with 105 standards required to retain its status as accredited by NJSACOP.
In a statement, Wagner - who served as president of the NJSACOP in 2015 and 2016 and is seeking re-election to the post - said the assessors will “examine all aspects of the Denville Township Police Department’s policies and procedures, management, operations and support services.” He said a part of the examination is listening to employee and public comments.
“As part of the on-site assessment, agency employees and members of the community are invited to offer comments” by calling (973) 627-4900 ext. 328 on June 4 between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., Wagner wrote. Written comments will also be accepted and should be sent to the NJSACOP at 571 Route 73 North, Suite 12, Marlton, N.J. 08053.
As described by Wagner, neither the phone calls or the letters should be general rants or praises of Denville’s cops. And they can’t be long-winded; Wagner said the phone calls will be limited to five minutes long.
He said the comments must be solely related to his department’s compliance with NJSACOP standards. These standards can be read at the police station by those who contact Denville Police Cpt. Paul Nigro at (973) 627-4900 ext. 314, Wagner wrote.
“Verification by the team that the Denville Township Police Department meets the Commission’s ‘best practice’ standards is part of a voluntary process to achieve accreditation, a highly prized recognition of law enforcement professional excellence,” the chief pointed out. “Accreditation results in greater accountability within our department, reduced risk and liability exposure, stronger defense against civil lawsuits, increased community advocacy and more confidence in the agency’s ability to operate efficiently and respond to community needs.”
Nigro said the department is already accredited. The upcoming review is part of maintaining that status, he said.