News Flash

Town of Hamden

Posted on: June 26, 2020

Police Chief John Cappiello Announces Retirement, Dep. Chief Sullivan to Serve as Acting Chief


Hamden – Police Chief John Cappiello announces his retirement from the Town of Hamden Police Department, effective June 30th. Commenting, Mayor Curt Balzano Leng applauded Chief Cappiello’s long record of strong ethics and exemplary service to the Hamden community.

The Mayor remarked, “Police Chief Cappiello has been a strong leader in the Hamden Police Department, serving with extraordinary integrity in his 35+ years of service. We have been very fortunate to have his steady hand in the leadership positions of Deputy Chief and then Police Chief over the last decade and a half.”

Upon his retirement, Deputy Police Chief John Sullivan will serve as Acting Police Chief. Deputy Chief Sullivan is also a highly decorated member of the Hamden Police Department, receiving more than 40 citations and recommendations for honorable service and excellence in the line of duty during his career. June 23rd, 2020 marked Sullivan’s 25th year of service to the Town of Hamden. He is possibly best known for his service and interaction with the public as a leader in Hamden’s community policing efforts. 

Chief Cappiello, in partnership with former Chief Wydra, was a core member in a team of public safety leaders who made our community safer and stronger. Pro-active and thoughtful efforts toward crime prevention, improved community focus and relations, expanded professional development and trainings for Officers, efforts to diversify our Department, and increased use of technology for efficiency and effectiveness are just some of accomplishments achieved under their tenure.

Mayor Leng commented, “Capp” as he was called for many years before being called Chief, is someone I have always been able to depend on with his commitment to public safety for all residents. I am deeply grateful for his service. I wish Chief Cappiello and his family the very best in his retirement."

In response to Chief Cappiello’s impending retirement, the “Hamden Police Chief Community Input & Transparency Committee”, will be asked to resume their work.

The committee was tasked with four specific action items, some of which were completed and others which will be upcoming, including:

1.) completion of an updated job description that reflects Hamden’s goals for the position of Police Chief;

2.) to research best practices for key recruitment strategies to ensure that the Town proactively seeks a quality pool of diverse, experienced applicants, including but not limited to where to advertise and recruitment;

3.) after the recruitment, the Mayor is asking this Committee to take the lead, working with the Personnel Department, to conduct full interviews of the applicants, so that a list of the top candidates recommended by the Committee can be forwarded to the Mayor.

The recommended candidates will then be interviewed by the Mayor and members of his Administration, with continued input from the Committee. The goal is to complete this process in a thorough, but expedient manner.

Mayor Leng is available for public comment or interview if desired, and can be reached at 203-400-4408.

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