Aberdeen holds ceremony for new police hires, promotions


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ABERDEEN – The Aberdeen Township Police Department marked the promotions of two veteran officers and the addition of three new patrolmen during a recent ceremony.

Alan Geyer, who was appointed police chief on March 1 when Rick Derechailio retired, was formally sworn in as the department’s commanding officer during the May 13 ceremony.

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And, Sgt. Roger Peter was promoted to lieutenant. He is a 17-year veteran of the department who served on the Bayshore Narcotics Task Force, the Rapid Deployment Force and was a firearms instructor for 15 years. Peter was promoted to the rank of sergeant in 2018.

At the same time, Patrolman John Zeller was promoted to sergeant. He joined the police department on Jan. 1, 2012, and was assigned to the Traffic Division in 2017.

Prior to joining the police department, Zeller served in Operation Iraqi Freedom as an Air National Guardsman. Zeller served as the PBA president from June 2019 until his appointment as a sergeant.

Aberdeen Township’s three new officers – Christopher Vetter, Hakim Bryant and Jose Veliz Jr. – have been assigned to the Patrol Division.

Vetter, 24, graduated from Matawan Regional High School. He earned an undergraduate degree in criminal justice from Kean University.

Bryant, 31, graduated from Ranchview High School in Texas. He earned a degree in culinary arts from Brookdale Community College.

Veliz, 21, graduated from Matawan Regional High School. He earned a degree in criminal justice from Brookdale Community College

The police department has 45 sworn officers. Over the last two years, municipal officials have hired hired seven new officers.

The officers were sworn in by Mayor Fred Tagliarini. Remarks were delivered by Geyer, Tagliarini and Township Manager Bryan Russell.

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