CALDWELL, NJ — In the ongoing legal battle between Caldwell Police Chief James Bongiorno and members of the Caldwell Police Department, the Borough of Caldwell recently reaffirmed its intention to continue standing behind the chief. The borough also stated that it has no intention of settling.
On July 14 of this year, Caldwell Lt. Michael Geary filed a civil lawsuit against both the borough and the chief after threatening to do so for nearly a year.
According to borough attorney Greg Mascera, the attorneys who were hired to represent both the borough and Chief Bongiorno have been instructed to do so vigorously.
“Chief Bongiorno has had his name dragged through the mud, in my opinion and I believe I can speak for the people on the [council], unfairly and unjustly,” said Mascera. “Chief Bongiorno is a man of integrity and character and his reputation needs to be defended.”
Mascera added that the borough will do everything in its power to make sure that Bongiorno’s name is properly defended and that there is a “just outcome” to what he believes are “frivolous lawsuits.”
“The borough stands behind Chief Bongiorno 100 percent and the members of the governing body are fully confident that when this is concluded, the borough will prevail and Lt. Geary’s allegations will turn out to be false,” said Mascera. “Unfortunately, because of the nature of litigation proceedings, Chief Bongiorno was put in a position where he had to take these unfounded punches and he can’t defend himself—because defending himself through newspapers is not the proper way to defend a litigation.
“The borough stands behind him and is sure that his character and his integrity will shine in the end.”
Bongiorno thanked the borough, including the mayor and council, for its continued support in this matter.