MONTVILLE, NJ – Montville Township Police Lt. Carlo Marucci was given his second Public Safety Award by the Montville Township Chamber of Commerce at its 54th annual awards banquet March 11.

Marucci is a life-long resident of the township and has worked for the police since 2001. He has been a lieutenant since 2015 (see the article here), and he is shift commander of squad one of the patrol division. He is also head firearms instructor and a field training officer.

During his career, he has received five Honorable Service awards, two Unit Citation awards, and two Life Saving awards. Between January and September 2016, he arrested 14 people for heroin possession, resulting in the seizure of more than 571 bags of heroin.

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Presenter and Chamber Board Member Carl Grau read Captains Andrew Caggiano’s and Mark Olsson’s recommendation of Marucci, which stated, “Carlo has been a mentor to the officers under his command. He works hand-in-hand with them and always provides assistance, guidance, and direction. He leads by example and has brought pride and distinction to the Montville Township Police Department.”

Marucci thanked the chamber and those who nominated him for the award. He said he is surrounded by many great men and women in the Montville Township Police Department.

“These people I speak of are the future of this police department, and trust me when I tell you, this township is in great hands,” Marucci said.

“In 2015 the department had 420 arrests, and in 2016 we had 362,”he continued. “That’s 782 arrests among 37 officers, numbers that don’t even include DWIs. What you have here is a young, proactive and well trained department. For some of these guys that’s an arrest every 21 hours of work.”

Marucci described a 2016 incident in which Officers Doug Venderhoof and Tony Condurso administered narcan to a 29-year-old drug overdose victim, saving his life. He said that in February 2016, Officers Jason Blustein and Dan Casillo administered CPR on a lifeless 20-year-old male after breaking through a bathroom door, and saved the man’s life. In 2015, Officer Dan Saldutti witnessed “unusual behavior” by a female driver on Route 46.

“The female looked as if she was in distress inside the vehicle,” Marucci said. “Saldutti stopped the vehicle and further investigation revealed that this female was being held against her will, inside the vehicle, for four hours, while being abused by the male inside. The man was arrested and charged with kidnapping, aggravated assault, and other charges.”

Although Montville Township had the most heroin deaths in the county in 2016, Marucci said it was one of the leading departments in the county for heroin arrests, due to the major highways cutting through the township and also due to patrol officers “using target-specific patrol techniques, looking for the killer and finding it.”

“We are proactive, not reactive; that’s why our arrests are higher than most,” Marucci said. “As residents and business owners in town, you want your police officers to be aggressive and looking for criminal activity to deter it.”

He said a year ago a Pennsylvania resident was arrested by Montville Township police and told him that word in his town in Pennsylvania was, “‘Don’t drive through Montville with heroin, because they’ll find it.’ They told us that dealers and users were actually detouring around Montville on Route 80 to avoid detection. That’s the reputation you want your police department to have,” Marucci said.

“I am proud and honored to be recognized by the Chamber of Commerce as being one of the most successful officers in narcotic arrests, but I can also tell you that it’s not just me,” Marucci concluded. “I truly accept this award on the behalf of all the proactive, aggressive, well educated and well rounded officers that all love doing what they do. That’s looking for narcotics and criminal activity that keep Montville a safe town.”

To see Marucci’s acceptance preceded by chamber member Carl Grau’s introduction, click: