Jersey City police car
Jersey City Police Car

New Jersey Acting Attorney General Andrew J. Bruck has released the names of New Jersey police officers who committed “major disciplinary violations” between June 15, 2020 and December 31, 2020. Included among the 211 named individuals are seven officers from Jersey City.

The disclosure follows a June 9, 2020, directive from former Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal, giving New Jersey law enforcement agencies 60 days “to publish their first public reports identifying officers who committed serious disciplinary violations.”  Grewal’s order came after a 9-0 ruling by the New Jersey Supreme Court affirming the Attorney General’s power to compel the disclosure over the objections of police unions.

At the time, Grewal explained that “By lifting the cloak of secrecy over our state’s police disciplinary process, we are not simply ensuring accountability for those who engage in misconduct; we are also demonstrating that the vast majority of law enforcement officers work hard and play by the rules.”

According to New Jersey Monitor, many reformers believe that the disclosures don’t go far enough and may leave out a large number of bad actors.

Jersey City police officers named in Bruck’s report are:

  • Lt. Michael Timmins lost a total of 90 days* for violating JCPD Rules and Regulations for; Conduct, Mishandling of a Firearm, Intoxicants Off Duty. Lt. Timmins negligently discharged a firearm while off duty and on his personal property. FNDA [Final Notice of Disciplinary Action]: Issue date 06/15/2020
  • Sgt. Tarance Bryant lost a total of 20 days accrued time for violating JCPD Rules and Regulations for; Equipment, Conduct and Traffic Laws. Sgt. Bryant was responding to a call for service traveling at a high rate of speed. FNDA: Issue date 08/25/2020
  • Police Office Andrew Parra lost a total of  20 days for violating JCPD Rules and Regulations for ; Obedience to Laws, Regulations and Orders and Conduct. P.O. Parra was involved in a Domestic Violence incident. FNDA: Issue date 09/08/2020
  • Police Officer Maria Decristofaro lost a total of 122 Days for violating JCPD Rules and Regulations for; Conduct, Neglect of Duty and Truthfulness. FNDA: Issue date 09/16/2020. Resignation effective 09/17/2020.
  • Police Officer Michael O’Neill lost a total of 25 days accrued time for violating JCPD Rules and Regulations for;  Failure to Perform Duties and Conduct after failing to submit an MVA report as required. FNDA: Issue date 09/23/2020
  • Police Officer Gicella Sanchez  lost a total of 109 days for violating JCPD Rules and Regulations for;  Criminal Acts and Conduct and was terminated. FNDA: Issue date 10/05/2020
  • Lt. Daniel Coyle lost a total of 20 days accrued time for violating JCPD Rules and Regulations for; Conduct and Intoxicants Off Duty . Lt. Coyle was arrested for DWI and other traffic violation. FNDA: Issue date 11/19/2020

* Where unspecified, lost days refers to losing vacation and/or “comp” days. Descriptions are presented as provided by the JCPD.

In the future, the reports will come out yearly and law enforcement agencies will report major discipline on January 31 for the preceding calendar year.

Aaron Morrill

Aaron is a writer, musician and lawyer. Aaron attended Berklee College of Music and the State University of New York at Purchase. Aaron served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Ecuador. He received a J.D....