New police chief and team takes the reigns

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Mayor Robert Sabosik and Councilwoman Antoinette DePaola, chair of the borough council’s public safety committee, welcomed the new leadership of the Point Pleasant Police Department including, left to right, Sgt. Kevin Aurin, Lt. Brad McNally, Capt. Adam Picca and Chief Robert Lokerson. [KAYLA MARSH/THE OCEAN STAR]

POINT PLEASANT — Four local law enforcement officers were officially promoted to new ranks within the Point Pleasant Police Department Monday evening.

During the Point Pleasant Borough Council’s final meeting of the year on Dec. 21, Robert Lokerson, Adam Picca, Brad McNally and Kevin Aurin recited the oath of office before family, friends and colleagues as they assumed the new roles of chief, captain, lieutenant and sergeant, respectively, with the department.

“Tonight, Point Pleasant Borough has a very special night. We are recognizing four individuals who have spent years achieving these promotions,” Mayor Robert Sabosik said.

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“Point Pleasant is a family town and Point Pleasant Police Department is part of our family. Due to COVID, some families could not attend tonight so we will take our time to make sure we can highlight these officers’ careers and these promotions tonight. 

“They have spent so much time and energy, their families have suffered through the holidays when they had to work, through other events they had to miss, the least we can do is acknowledge them in a professional manner tonight, which they richly deserve.”

The changes to the leadership in the department come following the retirement of Richard Larsen from his position as chief earlier this month, after serving 32 years with the department. The promotion ceremony was filled with rounds of applause and loud cheers from family, friends, department officers and law enforcement officials from surrounding communities in attendance.

“I plan on leading this department into the future and make it even better than what it is. So many people that I have spoken to since I have been named chief, both in law enforcement and outside, have many positive comments about the strong reputation of our police department, our training, level of service,” Chief Lokerson said. “Our commitment to doing the right thing is second to none and I am happy to be part of this team. As chief, I plan to do my best and keep that reputation intact.

“Serving as a police officer today and facing adversity and other challenges, we ask more of our officers on the street today than at any time in history. Policing is about much more than simply investigating the crime and arresting those who do harm. It is providing housing to families in distress, it’s getting someone suffering from mental illness medical help, working out civil disputes between neighbors and working with our community. 

“We realize that there are some things that need to be done that are not always easy to do and sometimes work is not very pleasant, but we come to work every day; we’re available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and we always try to treat people fairly, with dignity, and with the respect they deserve. Please know that on my watch we are going to keep that level of service going and try to find ways to improve on it. 

“A police chief can only be successful with the support of the officers, the staff members, at every level of the agency. I want to hear your ideas, I want you to be a part of the decision-making process … [as] future leaders of the police department. Please know that the Point Pleasant Police Department is committed to working with you to make this community a safe and secure place to live, raise a family and to work and we will work hard to gain and maintain your trust. It is an honor and a privilege to serve as your police chief.”

This is an excerpt of the print article. For more on this story, read The Ocean Star—on newsstands Friday or online in our e-Edition.

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