Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer has announced that effective today, May 19, pursuant to his authority as Chief Law Enforcement Officer of Ocean County, the Ocean County Prosecutor's Office has assumed full command and control of the Lavallette Police Department.
"It is my understanding that Lavallette Police Chief Colin Grant will begin terminal leave effective May 29, 2022, and will officially retire by the end of this year. The departure of Chief Grant prior to his retirement date leaves the Lavallette Police Department without the appropriate level of direction and supervision." Prosecutor Billhimer said.
"It is imperative that we maintain the continuity of the Lavallette Police Department and ensure that the residents of Lavallette remain safe. Ocean County Chief of Detectives Anthony U. Carrington, Jr., is hereby appointed Officer-in-Charge of the Lavallette Police Department, and the day-to-day obligations will be delegated to Joseph F. Mitchell, retired Chief of Ocean County Detectives, and other senior members of the Prosecutor's Office, effective this date."
Prosecutor Billhimer - by and through the Ocean County Prosecutor's Office Professional Standards Unit - had previously assumed command and control of the Internal Affairs functions of the Lavallette Police Department on December 16, 2021, after an audit of the Department's records.
"We support the men and women of the Lavallette Police Department and will turn our focus to ensuring public safety while preparing the Department for the summer season. In addition to providing an Officer-in-Charge in Chief Grant's absence, we will conduct a comprehensive evaluation of the Department while instituting appropriate levels of employee management and supervision," Prosecutor Billhimer said.
"We will endeavor to work with the Borough to develop a command staff, promulgate updated rules and regulations, and hire personnel to facilitate the Department's accreditation. Professional and personal accountability will be required of all Department employees while the Department is under the day-to-day control of Ocean County Prosecutor's Office."
"I would like to thank Chief Grant for his service to the residents of Lavallette and wish him all the best in his well-deserved retirement," Prosecutor Billhimer concluded.