The Police Department promoted four officers in a ceremony at City Hall led by Chief of Police Ken Ferrante and Mayor Dawn Zimmer in front of a packed room of family, friends, and officials.
Sergeants Edgardo Cruz and Corrado Allegretta were promoted to the rank of lieutenant. Detectives Nicholas Burke and Jill Costello were promoted to the rank of sergeant.
Burke said he has been with the Hoboken Police Department since 1995 and always knew he wanted to serve.
“I’ve always had dreams and aspirations of being a civil servant in my hometown,” said the born and raised Hobokenite. “To me it was a lifelong dream to join the ranks of being a supervisor with my 22 years of service.”
Burke said that for the past few years he has been a detective with the investigative bureau working the night shift. His new role will be with the uniform patrol division, where he will supervise eight to 12 police officers.
Burke said he is most interested in educating officers.
“I would say I am most looking forward to teaching and working with officers who are just starting out and leading them in the right direction,” said Burke. “I want to help them while they are honing their skills and teach them the right way to go about policing. I can’t wait to do that.”
The first generation police officer was sworn in surrounded by friends and family including his wife Julia and his three sons Joseph, Nicholas, and Ryan.
‘A family thing’
Costello has been a part of the department for 18 years and has been working with the Bureau of Identification where she will now be a supervisor.
According to Costello, this department is primarily in charge of the department’s records, including arrest reports, firearm applications, and finger prints.
Of her new role, she said she is most excited about helping the department become more modern.
“I’m excited about helping the bureau progress and adding positively to it by helping to bring it into the 21st Century,” said Costello. She said she has been working to help digitize all the departments’ records.
Costello said she always knew she would become a police officer.
“It means a lot to me to be the fourth women in the department to be promoted to sergeant absolutely” – Jill Costello
“My dad was a police officer and my grandfather and my uncle and my brother,” said Costello. “It’s a family thing so I knew from a very young age I wanted to be a police officer.”
Costello is the fourth women in the history of the Hoboken Police Department to be promoted to the rank of sergeant.
“It means a lot to me to be the fourth women in the department to be promoted to sergeant absolutely,” said Costello. “But I’m even more happy to be the fourth in the Costello family to be a sergeant with the Hoboken Police Department.”
Costello got to share her promotion with her parents despite them being on vacation.
“My parents were actually in Puerto Rico on vacation and they flew in especially that morning to be there with me,” said Costello. “I was especially honored to be pinned by my father and have my family there. They actually just flew back to continue their vacation.”
First in a family of cops
Allegretta began his career with the Hoboken Police Department in November of 1999 and was the first in his family to become an officer. Since then others in his family have joined.
“I came on in ’99,” said Allegretta, “and then my cousin and my brother and my brother in law joined, so I lead the way for those in my family, which is pretty cool. Even my wife is an officer but she’s with the prosecutor’s office in Morris County.”
According to Allegretta, he will be commander of the police department’s latest addition, the Emergency Services Unit, which is in charge of handling major incidents. Before that he worked in many other departments including the uniform patrol division, the investigative bureau, and the officer-training unit.
“In the Emergency Services Unit we will be handling major incidents such as a barricaded subject and I will be the commander on scene,” said Allegretta.
“Our unit is a good mix of veterans and new officers and I like to lead by example, so I will be looking forward to training along with them and instructing,” said Allegretta, who had his first day in the new role on Tuesday.
“It’s interesting some people still call me sergeant and then say ‘Oh sorry lieutenant,’ so I’m still getting used to the new title.”
Allegreta said he was proud to be pinned by his oldest son, 8-year-old Dean.
“He pinned me and he did a great job. We actually practiced the night before.”
Experience in every unit
Cruz has been with the department for 23 years and has been involved in several units throughout his career.
“I started off at uniform patrols. I walked the beat for a few years, then drove the car. I had a small stint with the Hudson County Prosecutors office as a narcotics detective up there. Then I came back and was promoted to sergeant in 2006 and oversaw night shifts in uniform patrol, and in 2015 I was transferred to the investigative unit,” said Cruz. “I think everyone should have experience in in each unit it makes you a well rounded police officer.”
Cruz will remain in the bureau of investigation and will handle OPRA requests, media releases, and manage the detectives.
“I will go over their caseloads and help them in however they need,” said Cruz. “I’m just looking forward to helping everyone as much as I can, closing out cases, and helping the citizens of Hoboken.”
Cruz followed in the footsteps of his older brothers Ray and Kevin Cruz.
“I always looked up to my oldest brother Ray when he was here,” said Cruz of his brother’s time with the department before he passed away. “He touched a lot of lives. He was a good smart person, and as his younger brother I always looked up to him.”
Cruz said he had his first day of work after the promotion and had to get used to everyone calling him by his new rank.
“I’ve already answered the phone a few times and said ‘Sergeant Cruz’,” he said laughing.
Cruz was promoted in front of his family including his two sons Marc and Joshua and his wife Kim.
Marilyn Baer can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.