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By: Daniel Jackovino - Staff Writer
BLOOMFIELD — Bloomfield Police Chief Christopher Goul has retired.
In an email to township administrator Ted Ehrenburg dated Dec. 31, 2013, Goul, a 28-year veteran of the force, cited health reasons. Goul wrote, “As discussed yesterday, I intend to retire from the Bloomfield Police Department March 1, 2014. My last day will be Jan. 1, 2014. I intend to utilize accrued time in order to address certain health issues. I thank the township for the opportunity to serve. I recommend Capt. Behre or Capt. Decker to be placed in charge until a successor is found. God Bless the Bloomfield Police Department.”
Capt. James Behre, a 26-year veteran, was selected to lead the 122-member force as officer in charge. He attended this week’s Township Council meeting.
Goul’s tenure as police chief was set within two bookends, as it were.
He was appointed police chief on Jan. 18, 2011, following Mark Leonard who lacked the support of former Mayor Raymond McCarthy.
However, when McCarthy’s victorious slate in the November 2010 elections swept out council members who supported Leonard, Goul replaced him.
His retirement comes amid a police controversy over the suspension of two officers charged with chronic absenteeism. The officers contend they were on military leave. In a signed but undated statement by Goul distributed on Dec. 31, 2013, he wrote, “The Internal Affairs Division of the Bloomfield Police Dept. has conducted a complete, fair and unbiased investigation. The actions of some individuals involved may be politically motivated and well beyond the scope of their authorized authority and are an attempt to obstruct and thwart proper investigative procedures to meet their own political and personal needs.”