SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ - South Brunswick Police Chief Raymond Hayducka has announced the promotion of two police officers. Dennis Yuhasz, a 15-year veteran of the South Brunswick Police Department, was promoted to Lieutenant and William Merkler, a 10-year veteran of the South Brunswick Police Department, was promoted to Sergeant.
“Today we promoted two officers who have distinguished themselves by their work efforts and commitment to our community. They have taken on numerous roles outside of their primary jobs to better our department.” Chief Hayducka said in a released statement, “They underwent a rigorous testing process by the New Jersey State Association of Chiefs of Police during the pandemic to achieve their new ranks. I know that these officers will bring all their talents and skills to benefit our department.”
Lieutenant Yuhasz was a Sergeant in the Patrol Division. Prior to that, he served as a Detective in the Investigations Division, a member of South Brunswick Police Department's Emergency Response Team, Honor Guard, Firearms Unit as a Field Training Detective, and Public Information Officer. He has received 21 awards and letters of commendation including a Life-Saving Medal and a Medal of Valor Award for capturing an armed murder suspect, according to the press release.
Sergeant Merkle used to work in the Traffic Safety Bureau as a Crash Investigator and Traffic Reconstructionist. Prior to that, he served in the Patrol Division where he was the Domestic Violence Liaison, a Field Training Officer, and a member of the South Brunswick Police Rifle Team. He has received 12 awards and letters of commendation, one for the apprehension of a burglary suspect and the investigation into a fatal hit and run.
In March 2020, the South Brunswick Township Council voted to change some of the requirements for promotions to sergeant in law enforcement. Police officers must serve six complete years of continuous service instead of five, and can only be promoted after seven years and passing the exam. The oral examination has been replaced with a service record review and a roundtable interview, which is conducted by the chief, deputy chief, and captains. The chief of police shall make the recommendation for promotion to the township manager after all eligible candidates are interviewed, according to the changes.