Friday, December 28, 2012
A tribute to Fort Lee's retiring police chief, who once upon a time coached the borough's youth.
- LOCAL CONNECTIONS
- Tom Meyers
Friday, December 28, 2012
As these short December days melt into memory, we here in Fort Lee should take time to bid farewell to our Police Chief, Tom Ripoli, who will retire with the ringing in of the New Year. The Chief has received many accolades over the past few weeks and will likely see many more in the coming days. All are well deserved. However these accolades center on his time as Chief of the Fort Lee Police Department and for his 41-year career in the department. The Chief is not only from Fort Lee, he is Fort Lee, and I will tell you why from my own personal perspective. Decades ago in the fall of 1972 across Main Street from Borough Hall, I first met Tom Ripoli. I was an 11-year-old kid from the Coytesville section of town. My friend Shawn and I …
Thursday, December 20, 2012
With Fort Lee Police Chief Thomas Ripoli set to retire Dec. 31, Capt. Keith Bendul and Capt. Timothy Ford will assume their duties as Chief and Deputy Chief, respectively, of the Fort Lee Police Department on Jan. 1.
Dozens of police officers and chiefs from Fort Lee and other towns, along with family and friends, packed Fort Lee's Borough Hall Thursday, as the Mayor and Council swore in a new police chief and deputy police chief. As expected, Capt. Keith Bendul was appointed Chief of the Fort Lee Police Department, and Capt. Timothy Ford was appointed Deputy Police Chief. Their appointments are effective Jan. 1, 2013, with current Fort Lee Police Chief Thomas Ripoli having reached the mandatory retirement age and therefore leaving the post he has served in since 2004 at the end of the year. The entire Mayor and Council presented Ripoli with a plaque “in recognition of his 41 years of service to people of Fort Lee,” words which Sokolich called “so …
Thursday, December 6, 2012
The new Fort Lee Police Department chief and deputy chief will be sworn in on Dec. 20; the reorganization meeting will take place on Jan. 3. The Mayor and Council will also recognize local student filmmakers at the meeting on the 20th.
The Fort Lee Mayor and Council will swear in a new police chief and deputy police chief at the governing body’s next regular meeting on Thursday, Dec. 20, officials decided Thursday. With Police Chief Thomas O. Ripoli reaching the mandatory retirement age of 65, officials appointed Capt. Keith Bendul Police Chief and Capt. Timothy Ford Deputy Police Chief. Saying the process of selecting Ripoli’s successor was “a lot of hard work” and lauding Bendul for his “incredible attention to detail,” Sokolich told Patch in October that the chief-deputy chief structure is something the Fort Lee Police Department hasn’t had for quite some time. “In Fort Lee, for the first time in a long time, we’ll have a chief and a deputy chief,” Sokolich said at …
Tuesday, September 6, 2011
Former Police Chief Thomas Tessaro recounts 9/11
Retired Fort Lee Chief of Police Thomas Tessaro smiled as he recounted a memory from that fateful day, Sept. 11, 2001. "We instructed everyone to drop their weapons into the box before they boarded the bus," Tessaro said. "We told them they would all have immunity as long as they removed from their bodies all weapons. You can’t even imagine the things we collected in that box." Almost immediately after the planes hit the World Trade Center, all traffic was closed to the George Washington Bridge, and Fort Lee police came out in full force to redirect traffic away from the bridge. But Tessaro also had to deal with a traffic problem of a different sort. "Thousands of people were congregating at Bridge Plaza because everyone was letting their…