Township of Monroe

The Mayor's Column

Police Earn a Badge of Honor with Monroe’s Safest City Ranking

August 01, 2017

 

Gerald W. Tamburro, Mayor

50 Safest Cities in New Jersey

Safety doesn’t happen by accident.

You may have recently seen in the news that Monroe has been named a “safest city,” by several national and regional ranking agencies.

Safewise just ranked Monroe the seventh safest city to raise a child in the country and the National Council for Home Safety and Security identified our Township as the 14th safest in the State.  While many factors played into these designations and mentions – everything from high school graduation rates to emergency preparedness training and crime rates – I would largely credit our hardworking police force with the Township’s improved standings in safety.

In fact, the latest Uniform Crime Report statistics back up these designations, recognizing Monroe Township as having the lowest crime rate in all of Middlesex County.  But I’m not the only one taking notice of our accomplished team of law enforcement. 

On June 14, during a ceremony at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, the New Jersey chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) recognized four members of our police department, who kept our roads safer through DWI enforcement.  In partnership with the New Jersey Division of Highway Traffic Safety, MADD-NJ honored some of Monroe’s finest, including Patrol Division Officers: Anthony Trohalides, Dale DeGraw, Ostap Pronin and Trevon Robinson. 

During the Monroe Township Council’s July 5 meeting, I was also pleased to present our Police Chief Michael E. Lloyd with the coveted “Community Leadership Award.”  I tend to believe that success is a reflection of leadership and since taking the reins in 2013, Chief Lloyd has lived up to and built upon some very high standards put into place by his predecessors. 

While we publicly honor our police force for their routine and distinguished service, I’d be remiss if I didn’t point out that as of late, there have been quite a few Monroe officers, who have gone above and beyond the call of duty.  If you’re tapped into local social media, you may be privy to some of their commendable acts that have flown slightly under the radar.  For instance, in May, Officer Wesley Panckeri saw a small child fall off his bicycle.  He pulled over to briefly introduce himself to the parents and check on the young boy, who was given a personal tour of Panckeri’s police cruiser. 

In April, Detective Bob Bennett stopped by a resident’s house to bring a young boy, who has ambitions to one day become a police officer but is also hearing impaired, a toy Dodge Charger – much like the one Bennett drives every day.  Bennett had a chance meeting with this young man weeks earlier and wanted to give him a token of encouragement. 

That same month, witnesses reported that Officer George Olynk stopped traffic on Prospect Plains Road to assist a rather impressive-sized turtle cross this usually busy stream of cars and trucks.  I’m certain there are dozens more untold stories about our officers just like these. These are the small gestures of civility and kindness and the type of community outreach that we both praise and encourage here in Monroe. 

It goes without saying that the Monroe Township Police Department has become a great source of pride in our town.  I’d like to thank all of our officers who don the uniform each and every day for their bravery, their diligence and for giving citizens, like you and I, the peace of mind that we might sometimes take for granted as residents.

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