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UPDATE: Massive Berkeley Brush Fire Nearly…

Police Force Has 'No Confidence' in Chief and Captain

The manager said he will be thoroughly investigating the matter and making a recommendation to council on how to proceed

The Fair Lawn police union announced Friday that it had taken a vote of no confidence in the leadership of the under Chief Erik Rose and Capt. Joseph Cook.

Det. David Boone, president of Fair Lawn Policemen's Benevolent Association Local 67, said 92 percent of the members supported the no confidence vote, which took place Wednesday.

"Never in the history of our department have the members found it necessary to take such a vote, but never have we found ourselves in a position such as we are now," Boone said.

Since 2007, rank-and-file officers have filed multiple lawsuits against the department, Rose and Cook that allege harassment, discrimination and retaliatory tactics.

Boone said the same pattern of behavior alleged of Rose and Cook in the lawsuits had also been exercised toward many other officers who have not taken their issues to court.

Two of the major complaints cited by Boone against Rose and Cook were their unequal disciplining of officers and lack of personal accountability.

While the PBA vote doesn't carry the weight to remove Rose and Cook from their positions, it's significant for its public repudiation of the police department's leadership by the rank-and-file officers.

"To take a vote, it takes a lot to push you to go that far," Boone said. "It finally came to a head. Enough is enough. This has gone on a long time."

Results of the vote have been passed on to borough manager Tom Metzler, who said he would share them with council.

Metzler called it a "major step," by the PBA and said he was very concerned about the situation in the police department, but cautioned against any snap judgments.

He said for the sake of all parties involved, he would launch a thorough investigation into the matter, hear out both sides and make a recommendation to council in a timely fashion.

In December,  in three of the lawsuits filed against them.

* January 13, 2012 at 10:11 PM
Oh My!....
Marty Cone January 14, 2012 at 03:47 AM
Last year, Mayor Swain said there was not a morale problem in the PD. I guess she was lying about that too. For the money a chief and captain make, I think some drastic steps need to be taken. I dont like the idea of the police department squabbling and possibly jeopardizing the safety of the residents.
ROBERT SHARPLES January 14, 2012 at 12:54 PM
Very important issue. Must be addressed now.
Bruce Knuckle January 14, 2012 at 01:28 PM
I dont think the police force are the only folks that have no confidence in the chief and captain. How many woman allegedly running from the captains office screaming and crying will it take to figure out that something is wrong? How many more lawsuits? Come on Zak, a little more investigative reporting here, dont stop short of the brass ring, what else is going on in there?
lance guinta January 14, 2012 at 02:33 PM
Bruce or should I say Officer Bruce sharp tongue for someone hiding behind a fake name. Bottom line the police would benefit from an seasoned police director.
Deleted because of harassment January 14, 2012 at 09:52 PM
This is what happens when skilled people are bypassed because they aren't the political darlings. How many talented officers got disgusted and left because they didn't curry the right favorites and were harassed or embarrassed or ignored? This is not just a PBA issue, but a town-wide safety issue, where some can never do anything wrong and the hardest workers never do enough right.
Bruce Knuckle January 15, 2012 at 01:06 PM
Lance, Do you comprehend this article? Do you see what goes on in there? I do have a sharp tongue when it comes to these things because its wrong. Its abuse of power and it is jeopardizing the safety of everyone. How do you know its not my real name? Is it b/c you looked it up to see which police officer posted it, so you can retaliate like these 2 clowns often do? Ill save you the trouble. I am not a police officer, nor should my disdain for crooks and corrupt officials mean anyhting different because who I might be. Besides, a cool manly name like Lance Guinta was already taken.
MaximusConfidence January 15, 2012 at 07:38 PM
Well, this article reminds me of this famous quote, "Just because everything is different doesn't mean anything has changed". ~Irene Peter

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