Newburgh’s top cops sworn in

PC Gomerez being sworn in.

NEWBURGH – Surrounded by family, friends, and colleagues, Jose Gomerez was sworn in as the City of Newburgh’s first police commissioner since 1982.  The ceremony also welcomed Anthony Geraci as the new chief of the department.  The two men with varied careers in law enforcement went to the same NYPD academy.

Mayor Torrance Harvey told Mid-Hudson News that it was “A great day for Newburgh” in welcoming the two men to the city.  Gomerez, a native of the Dominican Republic, was greeted at the ceremony by dozens of family members and friends waving Dominican Republic flags.  Among the well-wishers were the parents of the newly sworn commissioner, who flew from their homeland to see their son take the helm of the department that is seeking to re-envision itself and become more diverse.  The city has a population that is approximately 55 percent Hispanic. 

When addressing the audience, Gomerez transitioned back and forth from English to Spanish and the crowd cheered at every occurrence.  The new commissioner told the crowd at the Newburgh Armory, which included police brass from throughout the Hudson Valley and beyond, that diversity will be welcomed in the department.  

He said his administration will review what has been working and what has not been working.

“Together we are going to do it with the community. The best is yet to come for the City of Newburgh and the people of Newburgh,” he said.

After swearing in Gomerez, Newburgh City Court Judge Anika Mohammed administered the oath of office to Anthony Geraci, who officially became Chief of the department.  The 21-year law enforcement veteran left the NYPD to take a job with the Albany PD in 2003 where he rose through the ranks before retiring in 2019 to become the Chief of the Watervliet PD.

Chief Anthony Geraci

Geraci, much like Gomerez, thanked his family in friends for joining him Monday night and praised his family for tolerating all of the hardships that come with having a cop in the family.  Geraci also speaks Spanish, and let the audience know during his remarks.  In offering a brief address, the chief told his new department and the community leaders that changes are coming. 

“Our knowledge and experience can really benefit the department and provide some leadership, from what I see has been lacking over the past several years. There have been some really good chiefs of police, but it hasn’t been consistent,” he said.

Gomerez pointed to the youth in the audience and encouraged them to learn about law enforcement and consider it as a career.  “Join the force and be the change,” he said while vowing to “Reclaim the city inch by inch.”

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