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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Nazareth Loses Police Chief

Just a few days ago, I credited Nazareth Police Chief Michael Sinclair with making a big difference in Nazareth. Looks like it is now former chief Michael Sinclair.

According to Drexel University's Blogs at The Triangle, Sinclair has been hired as the university's first director of police operations. He will help build its first police department.

Update: Chief Sinclair Staying After All! Thanks to The Express Times, we now know that Chief Sinclair is staying put. According to reporter Michael Buck, Sinclair claims the information about his departure was posted prematurely.

33 comments:

Anonymous said...

Nazareth police chief staying with current post
by Michael Buck Tuesday September 09, 2008, 10:56 AM
The borough's police chief is staying put, despite information that appeared on Drexel University's Web site naming him as the director of police operations for their newly minted police department.

Chief Michael Sinclair said today the information, apparently issued by Drexel University, was "released prematurely."

The college's student newspaper, The Triangle, posted the information on its Web site Sept. 5, citing information from the news release.

The Triangle's blog post went so far as to call him the "former Nazareth Borough police chief."

"I like what I've done," Sinclair said. "I like where the department is at.
"There was an opportunity and I said "No, I like what I am doing in the borough.'"
Sinclair said his contract with the department was extended for another year at a borough council meeting earlier this month.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Thanks for this latest. I even checked the ET web page right before posting. I'll do an update.

Anonymous said...

http://blogs.thetriangle.org/drexelbeat/2008/09/09/search-for-university-police-official-continues/

Bernie O'Hare said...

Thanks again.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the clarification and details. What seems clear is that Sinclair is looking and won't be here long.

Anonymous said...

Boonie, you should leave Nazareth.

Anonymous said...

I am sure the extra money (I heard upwards of 80k) that the boro offered him in addition to a car was the extra incentive he needed

Bernie O'Hare said...

The annual salary should be a matter of public record. Although there will be those who disagree, I am a firm believer that you get what you pay for. Contrary to some of the comments I've seen posted, I believe Sinclair has made a difference and has made the department more responsive.

Anonymous said...

Bernie, do you actually LIVE in Nazareth??? Grafitti EVERYWHERE.... only 1 officer on at night.... a chief and corporal that RARELY leave the office.... Compleatly disconnected from the residents.. Making it look good by "walk abouts and business checks, perhaps good looks for the businesses but not the residents. Most officers are too green to actually know what's really going on. All driven by a mayor and council that will never admit if they are actuall wrong.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Yes, I live in Nazareth and the current force is a definite improvement over the prior force, who hated the new chief bc he interfered with their landscaping businesses. One of the officers solved a drug crime on his own time, resulting in Nazareth's biggest drug bust I can remember in a long time. This same officer did go into a brning building. In addition, the chief has made an effort to treach out to the community. It is a distinct improvement. You may not like to hear that bc you have pals on the prior force. I don't.

Anonymous said...

I hope you arn't refering to the latest bust on Whitfield street... that was just a joke! Real drugs are in places in this town that the so called OLD force knew about and kept in check. Places that now don't even see a car drive by more than once a day and that's to go to lunch!

Bernie O'Hare said...

Dude, you sound like you have a case of sour grapes.

Anonymous said...

Oh yea and as far as you get what you pay for... were getting MUCH less than were paying for.... Time will tell I guess.......perhaps if we pay the real officers more they wouldn't need another job to make ends meet. Or perhaps just hire all part time officers who really don't give two hoots about this town, just collecting a check from wherever they get part time hours. No commitment what so ever!

Anonymous said...

Anon 12:06 Are you at all familiar with that address? It might not have been "big" but there has been prescription drug sales going on for a long time. It was time to send a message. I bet more busts will happen in the next couple of months.

Anonymous said...

Have read other posts concerning the "bust", have talked to other people too, sounds like a trouble spot but always has been, has been known by "old" and somehow always gets by with the littlest of fines/punishment by setting someone else up.

Anonymous said...

Yes it has been a real trouble spot. The latest is that the house is so disgusting and run down that the occupants have to move out and the landlord has to fix the house.

Anonymous said...

http://blogs.thetriangle.org/drexelbeat/2008/09/09/search-for-university-police-official-continues/

Comments from Drexel have more information. Updated mins ago!

Anonymous said...

Will SOMEONE please explain to me, in detail, exactly what this chief has done for Nazareth in the year he has been here? Besides looking pretty and putting on a facade for the public, what has he accomplished? From what I hear, there is still alot of things our officers need to perform their jobs in a safe and productive manner. If it's true that he received a large raise to stay, then shouldn't the citizens and taxpayers of this borough have a say in this decision? i think it is a huge injustice to promote someone who does not answer calls and actually does the least amount of work (unlike the peon patrolmen)and reward him with a huge pay raise when he obviously no longer wanted to be a part of serving the borough. Where is the sense in all of this?

The Papier Boy said...

I think Bernie is right. The force has improved. It's still nowhere near where it should be, but it has improved. I think many of you are forgeting what was here not too long ago.

Anonymous said...

The news about Chief Sincliar is a shocker. I though he really liked it here in Nazareth and was doing a decent job. The confidence he has built up in the last year has just gone down the drain! Now we'll wonder if he has the citizens of Nazareth uppermost in his mind or if he's "secretly" looking for another job. I don't think Council should have given him another year to move to Nazareth. He needs to be here to do an effective job. I've lost respect for him and the way he handled this. He really screwed up!!! If he doesn't want to be here, he should just leave. If he doesn't want to do the job, then go. If Council offered him more money, then shame on them. There's no "extra" money in the budget to offer.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Before you start losing your respect or making seeping denunciations, it's important to have facts. We simply don't have them at this juncture.

From what I understand, Chief Sinclair was offered what must have been a dream come true - a six figure salary and a chance to build a police department from the ground up, close to his roots near Philly. He's be insane not to consider this very seriously.

But something has drawn him to Nazareth. That's why he had such a difficult time accepting the job.

There never was any official resignation from him. I spoke to someone after hours and was told that the $20k raise rumor is complete hogwash. Sinclair was given a one year extendsion of his original salary and it is commensurate with what Chief Ruch would have been making. Because it was after hours, I could not get the exact salary, but that is public record. It was voted on at a meeting of borough council last Monday.

Anonymous said...

Is the department accredited yet ??

Have they re-writin there policy manual or are they still operating in the dark ages.

Guarenteed Sinclair will leave this place in a heartbeat if a better opportunity presents itself..

Anonymous said...

Bernie, I will agree with you that the chief not considering a six figure salary at another job would be insane, but my concern is WHY was he looking elsewhere in the first place? Also, you referred to a drug bust and an officer running into a burning building to save lives in your earlier comment- by no means should the chief deserve credit for any of that! Did he set up the bust? Did he run into the burning building? Did that officer respond to these incidents because the chief influenced him to? The answers to these questions are all a resounding- NO!! Give the officer and his comrades the credit THEY deserve for a job well done, not just because there's a new chief in town. I'm sure these fine officers would have responded the same way no matter who the chief was. GIVE CREDIT WHERE IT'S REALLY DUE!

Anonymous said...

I think he should be addressed as "Chief SincLIAR". If the shoe fits, wear it.

Anonymous said...

Turning in a gun, a badge, and a car....That's not resigning???? Maybe he was just practicing for when another BETTER opportunity arises.

Bernie O'Hare said...

but my concern is WHY was he looking elsewhere in the first place?

How the hell do you know that? How do you know that he was not approached?

A lot of the comments here, posted anonymously, are obviously from people with sour grapes who did not like someone who imposed discipline on what had become a runaway police pepartment in which officers wrote their own schedules so they could continue their landscaping businesses. And you want to talk about serving the borough?

Anonymous said...

Pulling at straws, now aren't you, Bernie? This has nothing to do with the "old" crew, just a new chief that wouldn't know how to speak the truth if it smacked him in the forehead.

Bernie O'Hare said...

This has everything to do with the old crew, which explains why almost all of these comments are anonymous. Since his arrival, Sinclair has improved the quality of the police department. That includes the qquality of the officer, people like Officer Lahofski. He investigated the drug case that has been snarked by some, and did so on his own time. He rescued people from a building on fire. That's very much to the credit of Lahofski, but also to the credit of Sinclair.

The people who liked things under the old system are the cops who wrote their own schedules and pretty much did as they wanted.

mindboggled said...

Bernie speaks highly of one officer who “solved a drug crime on his own time”. I haven’t seen ant information that makes this “drug crime” more than an arrest for a “small amount of marijuana” If that is a drug crime then most neighboring departments are making several arrests for “drug crimes” every week. You don’t hear about them because they are not even considered news because in those communities they happen all the time not just once a year. And those departments do not consider arrests for "a small amount of marijuana" a drug bust. As for entering a burning building to “rescue” people. He banged on the door of the house next to the building on fire and told them to get out. Yes that was a great job, but hardly “entering a burning building”.

Bernie O'Hare said...

mindboggled,

My apologies. I inadverdently deleted a comment you posted here yesterday. I disagree with the substance of your remarks, but had no desire to delete you. Your views are welcome, even if they are not mine.

Anonymous said...

Are you kidding me...Officer Lahovski...ummm lets see yeah he is a great officer? He is receiving a pention from Bethlehem Township because he failed a psychological. Glad I do not live in Nazareth. Thats the guy I want protecting my family. Or lets see how about how he is being sued for and altercation with a young girl that weighed 100 lbs that he slammed into the street. GOOD LUCK NAZARETH! Thats a great pick for Chief Sinclair and the good ole boy Mayor! I am not going to say that the old crew was perfect but also maybe if they would have offered more money to its officers than they would not have had to start their own business's! They are good guys that did alot of good police work in Nazareth.

Anonymous said...

I just heard that the chief resigned and was driven home, sometime last week? Apparently, the Mayor or council offered him another $20,000 to stay. This for Nazareth residents, is ridiculous since the power of the department stays in the office and really does not have the pulse of the community in the way of at least patrolling and being visible, not too mention a car and gas to travel back & forth to Philly. What needs to be done, is for council to use common sense, not public money!

Mike said...

I am all for the chief getting a good salary , However he should live either withing the borough or 5 square mile radius, this is unacceptable and the fact that we are footing his gas bill is atrocious. I have routinely seen drug exchanges at the borough park I have stumbled across people using marijuana by the old amphitheater, there is graffiti all over town. Now this is NOT the fault of the police or the Chief. We need more officers and better equipment for our officers. with the amt of money we are paying the Chief to drive back and forth to Philly we could more than likely hire another patrolman, Having one officer on per shift is simply not acceptable. Mayor keeler and borough council you should be ashamed and you all need to get your priorities straight. Allow our Police to do there job and equip them. Stop the frivolous spending. If I have gotten any of my facts are incorrect please let me know.

Mike Miller