LIVINGSTON, NJ — Officially badged and sworn in at the Livingston Township Council meeting on Monday, Livingston Police Officer Kyle Kitchin and Auxiliary Police Officers Leonard Luciano, Thomas Bartzak, Tsvike “Mike” Golan, William Mullenburg and David Schwartz join the ranks of the Livingston Police Department.
Families members came forward to present the new officers with their badges as Livingston Chief of Police Craig Handschuch welcomed them to the brotherhood. In addition to congratulating the officers, Handschuch also thanked the families for their support.
“We’re a very demanding organization and I really do appreciate the sacrifices that each one of you make each day that you work here and which your loved ones make also,” said Handschuch. “I also want to thank the council for all their support and the residents of Livingston for their support. I can’t tell you how much the police department respects that blue line you painted down the center of the street—we really do appreciate it.”
In response, Mayor Shawn Klein also congratulated all the newly appointed officers and thanked the entire department on behalf of the township.
“This has been a tough couple of years for police in this country, but in Livingston you can’t tell,” said Klein. “Everyone here is professional and courteous and does their job and we thank you all from the bottom of our hearts.”
Kitchin, whose father is a retired captain of the Roseland Police Department, graduated from the Essex County Public Safety Academy in December and is currently doing “extremely well” in his training program, according to Handschuch.
Luciano, Bartzak, Golan, Mullenburg and Schwartz, who all graduated the police academy in the fall, join the Livingston Police Department strictly as volunteers, meaning they will not receive compensation for the many hours they will serve. Handschuch said that the entire department considers them to be brother officers regardless of the name on their uniforms.
“Volunteerism is very strong in this community—that’s one of the things I really like about Livingston,” he said. “These gentlemen are going to be giving up holidays and nights and it’s truly an honor to have them serve with us side by side.”
Auxiliary police duties often include storm-related emergencies, crowd control, pedestrian safety and assisting with extra patrolling among others. However, these officers could be called upon at any time to supplement Livingston’s forces on any duties that we want them to perform.
Handschuch applauded them in advance for the sacrifices that they will make for their families and for the residents of the Township of Livingston.
Also in attendance on Monday was Roseland Police Chief Richard McDonough, who took the opportunity to thank all the men and women of the Livingston Police Department. As an out-of-town officer, he said Livingston police offices have “been there in a heartbeat” any time Roseland has needed assistance and thanked the department for its continued support.