The South Windsor Police Department moved one step closer to being at full-strength in terms of personnel with the swearing in of a new officer Monday morning.
Joseph S. Dalessio, 23 and a graduate of Westfield State University, was sworn in by Chief Matthew Reed as an officer, bringing the number of staff to 40 out of a possible 41 positions.
“We are very excited,” Sgt. Scott Custer, the department’s information officer, said in a telephone interview. “He’s got strong background and a law enforcement family. He’s got family members who are in law enforcement, he’s done well academically and he was a reserve, volunteer officer in [Longmeadow] Massachusetts. We are excited to get him on board and have him be a part of our team.”
The new hire went through an exhaustive hiring process that included psychological and physical evaluations, as well as a polygraph test and an extensive background check, including interviews with former neighbors and girlfriends, Custer said.
Dalessio, according to a press release, will begin the five months of training at the Connecticut police academy in early October, followed by a 16-week field training program with experienced South Windsor officers.
Custer said that South Windsor police nearly hired a second, more experienced officer to bring the staff up to full strength, but the candidate withdrew from the process.
“It was very disappointing, as he was a very qualified individual,” Custer said.
With that in mind, the department still has one vacancy open, Custer said.
Correction: the article said that the full-strength of the police department is 43 positions, 42 of which are filled. It is 41 positions with 40 filled currently.