Two new officers join Metuchen police force

Staff Writer

METUCHEN — Borough officials welcomed two new officers to the Police Department last week.

Patrolmen Christopher Fiore and Matthew Scott were sworn in during the Dec. 15 Borough Council meeting. Acting Police Chief David Irizarry recalled interviewing both men.

“I remember speaking with the captain … about how I really wished to get them both,” he said. “And tonight our wish came true. To have two solid officers hired within less than a month is just incredible for us.”

Scott replaces Patrolman Joseph Wenskoski, who left the Metuchen Police Department to become an officer in Edison. Fiore fills the position left vacant by Joseph Ernest.

Fiore, who started on the Metuchen force in November, formerly worked for the Camden Police Department. Scott graduated from the John H. Stamler Police Academy, Scotch Plains.

More changes are in store for the Police Department, with Chief Robin Rentenberg officially retiring as of Feb. 1. While Irizarry has taken the reins of the top position in the department, Rentenberg remains on the roster until his official departure date, using earned leave hours, according to Sgt. Dave Liantonio.

Officials are expected to select a new police chief by February.

In other police news, Cpl. Kenneth Bauer has been appointed by Irizarry to serve as traffic safety officer for the borough, according to Council President Jay Muldoon.

“Cpl. Bauer has had prior experience as a traffic safety officer, so … he hit the ground running in his new assignment,” Muldoon said.

Bauer’s duties include traffic enforcement, pedestrian safety details, pedestrian and traffic safety training, conducting traffic studies and producing monthly accident reports, according to Muldoon.

As part of his new post, Bauer also serves as liaison to the Middlesex County Traffic Officers Association, the state Department of Transportation and the borough’s Traffic and Transportation Committee.

“So, this is great news, and this is another key component in our ongoing pedestrian safety efforts,” Muldoon said. “And I’m sure the mayor and council and residents are really pleased that we’ll now have a dedicated police officer focusing on pedestrian safety and traffic issues, so we look forward to working with him on that.”