[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Freehold by Ord. No. 17 (Ch. IV of the Revised General Ordinances), as amended through Ord. No. O-01-18. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
Fire Department — See Ch. 26.
There shall be a Police Department in the Township, the appropriate authority for which shall be the Police Subcommittee. Within the Police Department, there shall be such officers and other employees as the Township Committee may deem necessary, provided all such offices shall be created by ordinance.
All members of the Police Department shall be appointed by the Municipal Administrator upon the recommendation of the Chief of Police to hold office as provided by law.
The Police Department of the Township shall be under the control and direction of the Police Subcommittee. The Police Subcommittee shall consist of the Township Administrator and the Police Commissioner and shall act as the appropriate authority as defined in N.J.S.A. 40A:14-118. The Chief of Police shall be in charge of and have supervision and control of the Police Department as further defined in N.J.S.A. 40A:14-118.
Each year as soon after the organization of the Township Committee as may be possible, its members may select and designate a member thereof who shall be the Police Commissioner and who shall act as liaison between the Township Committee and the Chief of Police.
The Police Subcommittee shall establish, and may from time to time amend and repeal, such rules and regulations as it deems necessary for the efficient working of the Department. Within five days after the adoption of such rules and regulations or any amendment or repeal thereof, a copy thereof shall be posted by the Chief of Police in the room in the Municipal Building assigned to the Police Department and a copy thereof delivered to each and every member of the Police Department and a copy filed with the Township Administrator.
Each applicant for the Police Department shall comply with all of the laws of the State of New Jersey pertaining thereto. No person shall be given or accept a permanent appointment as a police officer in the Township unless such person has first been given a probationary or temporary appointment to such office in accordance with N.J.S.A. 52:17B-69, and has successfully completed a police training course in the Department of Law and Public Safety of the State of New Jersey, pursuant to the provisions of Chapter 56 of the Laws of 1961 (N.J.S.A. 52:17B-66 et seq.).
All appointments to the position of police officer shall be made in accordance with N.J.S.A. 40A:14-123.1a, with all those in Class 1 to be appointed first and then those in each succeeding class in the order above listed.
All applicants classified as Class 1 must be residents of Freehold Township as of the announced closing date of the civil service examination for the position and must maintain such residency continuously up to and including the date of appointment.
No person shall be appointed to the Police Department as a regular or probationary member unless such person shall at the time of making application be at least the age of 21. The applicant shall be a citizen of the United States of America. The applicant shall obtain, at Township expense, a certificate from the Township Physician stating that he/she is in good health and that his/her hearing, eyesight and general physical condition are such that he/she is capable of performing the duties required of a police officer. Each applicant shall be given an examination as arranged by the New Jersey Department of Personnel in order to determine whether such person is fully qualified to serve in the Police Department.
Before entering upon the performance of his duties, each member of the Police Department shall take and subscribe an oath to bear true faith and allegiance to the government established in this state, to support the Constitution of the United States of America and the State of New Jersey and to faithfully, impartially and justly discharge and perform all the duties of his office, which oath or affirmation shall be filed with the Clerk.
Creation; powers; qualifications. The office of Chief of Police is hereby created, the holder of which shall be charged with the supervision and direction of the Department pursuant to the provisions of this section. The minimum standards and qualifications upon which the Chief shall be selected are as follows:
The Chief of Police shall be chosen on the basis of his thorough knowledge of the principles and practices of modern police, civil defense administration and supervision, knowledge of the principles and practices of modern police science and crime prevention, and his ability to command the respect of officers and to plan, assign, direct, supervise and evaluate their work.
The Chief of Police shall have at least eight years' experience as a member of a Police Department or force and a minimum of five years of supervisory experience as a part of the eight-year experience qualification. Supervisory qualifications, however, shall have been obtained in a civil Police Department or force.
Appointment; term. The Chief of Police shall be appointed by the Township Committee in accordance with the laws of the State Department of Personnel of New Jersey and N.J.S.A. 40A:14-118. The Police Chief shall be responsible to the Township Committee and the Police Subcommittee as established under this chapter and consistent with his oath of office.
Salary. The police chief shall be paid such salary as is provided for by the Township Committee.
The Chief of Police shall be the chief administrative officer of the Police Department and shall be directly responsible to the Administrator for the efficiency and routine day-to-day operations thereof pursuant to policies established by the Police Subcommittee. He shall be responsible for the protection of lives and property in the Township and for the organization and direction of all Township activities concerned with public safety and the police function as defined by the applicable statutes.
He shall further pursuant to policies established by the Police Subcommittee:
Administer and enforce the rules and regulations and special emergency directives for the disposition and discipline of the force and its officers and personnel;
Have, exercise, and discharge the functions, powers and duties of the force;
Prescribe the duties and assignments of all subordinates and other personnel;
Delegate such of his authority as he may deem necessary for the efficient operation of the force to be exercised under his direction and supervision; and
Report at least monthly to the Police Subcommittee in such form as shall be described by the Police Subcommittee on the operation of the force during the preceding month, and such other reports as may be requested by such authority.
Removal. The Chief of Police may be removed for cause by the Township Committee pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:14-147 et seq., and Title 11A of the laws of the State of New Jersey.
Residency. The Chief of Police shall be a resident of the State of New Jersey and shall make his/her permanent residence within 15 miles of the geographical boundary lines of the Township within six months after the date of his/her appointment and shall, during his/her term of office, remain a resident within that geographical area. Should he/she cease to reside in that area, his/her office may be deemed vacant.
The Police Department shall:
Preserve the public peace, protect life and property, prevent crime, detect and arrest offenders against the penal laws and ordinances effective within the Township, suppress riots, mobs and insurrections, disperse unlawful or dangerous assemblages, and preserve order at all elections and public meetings and assemblages.
Administer and enforce laws and ordinances to regulate, direct, control and restrict the movement of vehicular and pedestrian traffic and the use of the streets by vehicles and persons, to protect the safety and facilitate the convenience of motorists and pedestrians, and make and enforce rules and regulations not inconsistent with the ordinances and resolutions of the Township for such purposes.
Remove or cause to be removed all nuisances in the public streets, parks and other public places of the Township, inspect and observe all places of public amusement or assemblage and all places of business requiring any state or municipal license or permit and report thereon to the appropriate department.
Provide proper police attendance and protection at fires.
Provide for the attendance of its member in court as necessary for the prosecution and trial of persons charged with crimes and offenses, and cooperate fully with the law enforcement and prosecuting authorities of federal, state and county governments.
Operate a training program to maintain and improve the police efficiency of the members of the Department.
The Police Department shall consist of the following positions, in addition to the Chief of Police as described in § 51-8section 4-8:
Captain: one position. The Captain is assigned as the operations commander. The Captain oversees and directs the day-to-day operations of the Patrol Division, Records Bureau, Special Services Bureau, Detective Bureau, Traffic Bureau, Park Ranger program and the Freehold Township/Freehold Borough Joint Investigation Team.
Lieutenants: six positions. The Lieutenants are assigned to oversee the day-to-day operations of the Detective Bureau, Records Bureau and Special Services Bureau. Lieutenants are also assigned as watch commanders to oversee and direct the 2:00-to-midnight shift.
Sergeants: eight positions. The Sergeants are assigned to directly supervise the three patrol shifts, the Detective Bureau and Traffic Bureau.
Detectives: eight positions. Detectives can be assigned to investigate all offenses covered under the laws of the State of New Jersey, ordinances of Freehold Township and can be assigned specific duties such as juvenile problems, Megan's Law compliance, narcotics and various duties assigned by their supervisors.
Police officers: up to 50 positions. Police officers patrol the Township of Freehold, respond to calls for service, enforce all criminal and motor vehicle laws of the State of New Jersey and ordinances of the Township of Freehold. Police officers can be assigned to specific duties such as Traffic Bureau, street crimes, investigations and task forces, among other details.
Class II special law enforcement officers: two positions. Class II special law enforcement officers can be assigned to many different duties, some of them include parking enforcement, traffic enforcement, court officer, traffic control and patrol duties.
Class I special law enforcement officers: four positions. Class I special law enforcement officers can be assigned to a variety of duties, some of which include park patrol, traffic control, court detail and special details.
All appointments previously made to any position within the Police Department are hereby ratified and confirmed.
Any officer or member of the Police Department and force shall be a resident of the State of New Jersey while serving in such position.
The Police Chief, subject to the approval by resolution of the Township Committee, may appoint special law enforcement officers for a term not exceeding one year, said appointment may be revoked by the Township for cause after an adequate hearing unless the appointment is for four months or less, in which event the appointment may be revoked without cause or hearing. The special law enforcement officers shall carry out their duties and responsibilities under the direct supervision of the Chief of Police and their powers, rights and duties shall be specifically defined by the Chief of Police. Their powers, rights and duties, however, shall immediately cease at the expiration of the term for which they were appointed or upon revocation of their appointment. The special law enforcement officers shall not carry a revolver or other weapon at any time except while engaged in actual performance of the officer's official duties and when specifically authorized by the Chief of Police or in the absence of the Chief such other chief law enforcement officer of the Township Police Department and further provided that the special law enforcement officer has satisfactorily completed the basic firearms course required by the State Police Training Commission. No person shall be appointed a special law enforcement officer unless he is a citizen of the United States, is able to read and write and speak English well and intelligently and has a high school diploma or its equivalent; is physically qualified; is of good moral character; and shall not have been convicted of any offense involving dishonesty or which would make him unfit to perform his duties; and has successfully undergone the same psychological testing that is required of full-time police officers in the Township. Every special law enforcement officer shall be fingerprinted, and his fingerprints filed with the Division of State Police and the Federal Bureau of Investigations. Reports shall be made by the Chief of Police to the governing body and Police Subcommittee concerning the eligibility and qualifications of any person proposed to be appointed as a special law enforcement officer.
All probationary police officers appointed to the regular police force shall, during their probationary period, complete a police training course at an approved school in accordance with the rules and regulations promulgated by the State Police Training Commission, unless any such person demonstrates to the State Police Training Commission satisfaction that he has successfully completed a police training course given by any federal, state or other public or private agencies, the requirements of which are substantially equivalent to the requirements of the police training and the rules and regulations promulgated thereunder. All special officers shall prior to the commencement of their duties successfully complete a training course approved by the Police Training Commission, and no special law enforcement officer may be issued a firearm unless he has successfully completed the basic firearms course approved by the Commission for permanent regularly appointed police and annual requalification examinations as required under N.J.S.A. 40A:14-146.14.
All members of the Police Department including the Chief of Police shall serve as police officers at such hours and in such manner as ordered pursuant to the instructions through the Police Subcommittee and the Chief of Police.
The hours of employment for the members of the Police Department shall be established by work schedules set by the Chief of Police or his designee in accordance with the rules, regulations and policies promulgated by the Police Subcommittee, the collective bargaining agreement and the federal and state labor standards. In the case of an emergency the Chief of Police shall have charge or control of the Police Department. The Police Chief shall have full authority to summon and retain on duty any and all members of the Police Department during the period of emergency. Emergency work schedules shall be prepared and implemented by the Chief of Police.
No person shall be removed from office or employment for any causes other than incapacity, misconduct, neglect of duty, conduct unbecoming of a police officer, disobedience of the rules and regulations now in effect and hereafter established for the Department, or absence from duty without just cause for five days or more.
Any member of the Department may be suspended, removed, fined or reduced from his office or employment therein, for any of the causes referred to in § 47-17 of the Code, or for violating rules and regulations governing the Police Department enacted pursuant to this chapter, after due notice and service of written charges and a hearing.
Any such hearing thereon shall be held by the Police Subcommittee no more than 30 days from the date of the service of a complaint upon an officer of a violation.
All members of the Police Department shall dress in such wearing apparel as shall be prescribed by the Chief of Police. The uniforms shall be furnished and maintained as required, at the expense of the Township. The members shall also be issued a badge and identification card and other supplies and equipment as may be required by the Township. The badge, identification card and all other equipment shall be returned to the Township at the termination of the appointment.
All firearms which may be provided by the Township shall remain the property of the Township.
All promotions to superior positions in the Police Department shall be made from the membership of the Department as constituted at the time of promotion and shall be made with due regard to length of service of the person to be promoted and his merit in the Department in accordance with the regulations and policies of the New Jersey Department of Personnel. No person shall be eligible for promotion to a superior position unless he shall have first served in the grade of patrolman in the Department.
Members of the Police Department who shall be injured, ill, or disabled may be granted a leave with pay for a period not to exceed one year, provided that the Township Physician, or if there be none, the member's treating physician shall certify to such injury, illness, or disability; and further provided that the member has exhausted all sick time, compensatory time, vacation time, personal time, as well as all other forms of paid leave which may be available. Written request for leave with pay must be initiated by the Police Department member and approved by the Municipal Administrator upon favorable recommendation of the Chief of Police. Leave so approved shall not be for longer than three months. Periods of leave with pay for longer than three months and up to the maximum of one year shall require the approval of the Township Committee.
Applicability; agreement required. Whenever the Chief of Police or his designee determines that extra duty assignments shall be performed for a party requesting private or quasi-public duty, the Chief of Police or his designee shall enter into an agreement providing for extra duty assignments for which the Township shall be compensated at the rate set from time to time by resolution. Such agreement shall be in accordance with the following standards:
The party requesting the assignment shall execute and deliver an agreement in a form approved by the Township Committee by resolution from time to time. The Chief of Police or his designee shall be authorized to execute any such agreement, provided that it has been submitted in the form approved by resolution.
The Township shall be responsible to provide all necessary insurance coverage as required by law, including but not limited to workers' compensation, public liability and claims for damage for personal injury, including death or damage to property which may arise or result from the Township's performance under the contract.
The party requesting the assignment of police officers shall indemnify and hold harmless the Township from any and all claims made by said police officers for injury or illness while performing extra duty assignments for said party. In addition, the party shall hold the Township harmless from any and all claims made by any third party for injury, illness or damage to property arising out of the extra duty assignment of a police officer.
Any and all extra duty assignments shall be determined and approved by the Chief of Police or his designee. The Chief of Police or his designee may assign a patrol vehicle for use in performing extra duty if and in the event it is determined that the use of a patrol vehicle is necessary to perform the contracted duty.
The work to be performed shall be considered "special assignment from independent contractors" and will not be considered direct assignment or duty on the job through the Township. The taking of any and all extra duty assignments shall be on a voluntary basis in accordance with a system established and administered by the Chief of Police.
Any and all payments due under any such agreement shall be paid 15 days from the date of billing. Interest shall be charged at the rate of 12% per annum on any amount billed for which payment has not been made within 15 days. The delinquent party shall be liable for all costs, fees and attorney's fees associated with the collection of any amounts due.
Exception. This section shall not apply to police officers serving on any prosecutorial task forces as may from time to time be established, or other duty assignments during which police officers are assisting any law enforcement agencies.