Two Bergen County Plaza
Hackensack, NJ 07601
Mon-Fri: (201) 646-2300
After Hours: (201)-642-5962

Bergen County Prosecutor

HONOR, INTEGRITY & RESPECT

Hackensack, NJ

Welcome to
the Bergen County
Prosecutor`s Office

The Bergen County Prosecutor is the chief law enforcement officer for the County of Bergen. As a constitutional officer charged with the broad obligation "to use all reasonable and lawful diligence for the detection, arrest, indictment and conviction of offenders against the laws," the Prosecutor has wide-ranging authority over the law enforcement community in the county. With that authority come tremendous responsibilities and obligations, both to the law enforcement community itself and to all the citizens of Bergen county.

Our Mission:

The mission of the Bergen County Prosecutor`s Office is to commit its resources, in partnership with the law enforcement community and citizens of Bergen County, to promote a safe and secure environment for the residents of Bergen County while maintaining the highest law enforcement standards. The members of this office will effectively and efficiently investigate and prosecute criminal offenders, fairly, impartially and justly. We will ensure and respect the rights of individual victims of crime. In addition to conducting its own proactive investigations, the Bergen County Prosecutor`s Office maintains specialized squads that are available to assist the municipal departments in the investigation of crimes calling for increased personnel, specialized equipment, technical know-how or highly specialized training. Such crimes include arson, homicide, sex crimes, drug trafficking, traditional organized crime, domestic violence, insurance fraud and most recently, computer crimes. These squads give each municipality the ability to bring additional resources to bear when presented with particularly challenging cases or particularly dangerous offenders.

In-Service Trainings

BERGEN COUNTY PROSECUTOR`S OFFICE IN-SERVICE TRAINING

MISSION: The Bergen County Prosecutor`s Office will provide an array of In-Service training programs geared toward the professional development of sworn Law Enforcement personnel.
PROGRAM: To incorporate the latest criminal investigation techniques and information, thereby enhancing the effectiveness and professionalism of the law enforcement community.
TIME: From 9:00am-4:00pm unless indicated otherwise.
LOCATION: Within the Paramus, New Jersey facility and the Paramus Life Safety complex, unless indicated otherwise. Directions are available upon request.
DRESS CODE: Proper Business attire.

Click Here To Register

Internal Affairs

CONFIDENTIAL INVESTIGATIONS UNIT

ANNUAL REPORT- 2017

Preamble

The Confidential Investigations Unit (“the Unit”) of the Bergen County Prosecutor's Office was initially established in 1998.  Since its inception, the Unit has undergone changes both in staffing and philosophy.  Under the direct command of the Prosecutor, established standards and practices allow a municipal police agency to seek guidance, supervision and support from the Unit so that the individual department can effectively police and discipline its own.  This policy was developed for the express purpose of instilling in the citizenry a confidence that their local police agencies had the ability to act upon a complaint and that intervention from an outside agency was not needed to ensure that a fair result was ultimately achieved.  This is a significant departure from a prior philosophy of involving the Prosecutors Office in the investigation of matters that were purely administrative in nature.

The primary functions of the Confidential Investigations Unit are set forth as follows:

  1. Confidential Investigations
  2. Background Investigations
  3. Citizen Complaints.
  4. Law Enforcement Executive Investigations

Additionally, the Unit has expanded the scope of its responsibility to include the investigation and prosecution of matters concerning government and public office integrity.


Confidential Investigations

Law enforcement personnel from the Unit are used when an allegation is received either via notification from a municipal police agency, citizen complaint or other outside source, that a police officer or other public official may be involved in criminal activity.   Depending upon the nature of the allegation, the Unit will generally work in conjunction with the local agency to investigate the matter.  This is done pursuant to Attorney General Guidelines that mandate police departments notify the County Prosecutor of criminal investigations of law enforcement personnel.  In other instances, members of the Unit will work alone when the Prosecutors Office is the recipient of the allegation of wrongdoing, or if involvement of the outside agency would impede or jeopardize the integrity of the investigation.

During the course of calendar year 2017, the Unit provided guidance, supervision and support to numerous municipal police agencies and conducted the Unit's own confidential investigations totaling 31 cases.  There are direct results from the assistance provided by the Unit and from the Unit's own confidential investigations, but there are also indirect results such as the deterrent effect that an effective investigation may have on those persons who may be tempted to engage in wrongdoing.

Pursuant to the revised Attorney General Internal Affairs Policy and Procedures, the Confidential Investigations Unit assumed the responsibility for investigations regarding all complaints made against law enforcement executives. During 2017, thirteen (13) of the 31 investigations conducted by the Unit involved law enforcement executives. 

In addition, in order to assure that all personnel assigned to the Unit complete Internal Affairs training mandated by the Attorney General Guidelines, The Prosecutor approved an Internal Affairs training course for law enforcement Internal Affairs officers.  The course is conducted by the Prosecutor’s Office, the Bergen County Division of Law & Public Safety, and the Bergen County Chiefs Association.  This training is held at the Bergen County Police Academy, and administered by certified instructors with course syllabus and content drawn in accordance with current Attorney General Guidelines.


Background Investigations

Individuals seeking employment in the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Officer must be effectively screened to ensure their integrity.  Accordingly, each applicant for a position with the Office undergoes an extensive investigation of their family background, financial dealings, educational and employment history as well as a criminal background check.  Interviews are conducted with persons having knowledge of the character of the applicant.  Each person is also drug screened.

Each investigation takes approximately one month to complete.  In calendar year 2017, the Unit conducted 86 background investigations.  At the conclusion of the investigation, the ranking law enforcement officer in the Unit must sign off and make a recommendation as to the applicant's suitability for employment.  The process is then repeated by the Assistant Prosecutor, the Chief of Detectives, the First Assistant Prosecutor and ultimately, the Prosecutor.


Citizen Complaints

Perhaps the most time consuming, yet important function of the Unit, is the screening and investigation of complaints received from citizens concerning police or other government and public officials.  The Office is judged by the citizenry based upon the professionalism exhibited by our detectives, regardless of the merit of the complaint investigated.  Detectives involved in such investigations must simultaneously pursue and balance to different goals: to represent the Office to the citizen in a manner that instills confidence; yet at all times acting in a detached, neutral and impartial manner to the individual who is the subject of the complaint.

During calendar year 2017, the Unit received and formally responded to 291 citizen complaints.  The dispositions of these complaints ranged from formal investigations conducted with sustained findings to matters that were investigated, but determined to be unfounded.  The majority of the complaints were referred to the municipality of origin to give the local police agency the opportunity to investigate, and where appropriate, discipline their own officers, thereby instilling in the citizenry a sense of confidence in their police departments.

CIU Summary Reports

Open Public Records Act

TO: MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC
FROM: ACTING PROSECUTOR DENNIS CALO
RE: PUBLIC ACCESS TO GOVERNMENT RECORDS

Members of the public are hereby advised that the provisions of the New Jersey Open Public Records Act (OPRA), N.J.S.A. 47:1A-1, et seq., allow for public access to government records, but contain certain exceptions. The attached Open Public Records Act Request Form lists many of the exceptions and explains your rights under the law. To obtain government records, please complete the form and submit it in one of the following ways:

Click here for the Request Form

By Mail or Hand Delivery to:
OPRA Records
Bergen County Prosecutor`s Office
Two Bergen County Plaza
Hackensack, NJ 07601-7000

By Email to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
By Fax to: (201) 646-3794

Outreach

The Bergen County Prosecutor`s Office is dedicated to educating Bergen County youth on prevalent issues such as substance abuse, gangs and Internet Safety. As the Acting Bergen County Prosecutor, I am dedicated to creating and offering parents, educators, law enforcement and social service agencies, educational material to assist in teaching our youth about the repercussions and consequences of the negative behaviors associated with drugs, gangs, and Internet predators.

It is my hope that by aggressively addressing these issues facing our youth, through education and discussion, collectively we will have a positive effect on the decisions made by our youth.

Thank you,
Dennis Calo
Acting Bergen County Prosecutor

 
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ADMINISTRATION

The administrative unit of the Bergen County Prosecutor's Office consists of the County Prosecutor, First Assistant Prosecutor, Chief of Detectives and the Office Manager. Each member is charged with the daily oversight of the office and its many functions.

 
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VICTIM SERVICES

The Bergen County Office of Victim-Witness Advocacy has provided services to thousands of crime victims and witnesses throughout the county.  We are here to support you and ensure your rights as a crime victim are being respected.

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OUTREACH

With a key focus on high risk behaviors, gangs, and violence, the Bergen County Prosecutor`s Office is dedicated to implementing awareness, prevention education programs and intervention strategies on violence, gangs, victim impact, bullying, alcohol, drugs and Internet Safety.

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