Five police officers moved up the ranks of the department Friday in a ceremony held in front of a full audience at council chambers.
All administrative vacancies were filled in the Middletown Police Department, according to Chief William McKenna, after successfully completing the written exam, oral board and chief’s interview.
Lt. Gary Wallace was promoted to captain, Sgt. Scott Aresco to lieutenant, and Dets. Daniel Petrulis, Dave Godwin and Frank Scirpo to sergeant.
Fresh on the minds of all those gathered was the accident Thursday evening in which Officer Peter J. Botsacos collided with a pedestrian crossing Saybrook Road, injuring both men.
"There is no such thing as a routine day or a routine shift," Mayor Dan Drew said, commending officers for their response to the scene.
McKenna offered a statement before the pinning of each officer, saying how each embodied and surpassed the values of the police oath of office. He called out Sgt. Aresco as a third-generation city officer, whose grandfather, father and uncle served on the force in Middletown in addition to two cousins who are Connecticut State Police officers.
The following is taken from the biographies of each officer, which lists their many accomplishments.
Wallace is a graduate of East Hampton High School. He received his associate’s degree from Middlesex Community College and is attending Charter Oak College Majoring in Public Safety Administration.
He was a member of the U.S. Navy from 1987-1991 and a decorated Gulf War Veteran. He was hired by the Middletown Police Department in October of 1994, he has worked in Patrol, Investigative Services, and the Special Investigations Unit. He was promoted to Sergeant in 2006 and to Lieutenant in 2008.
Wallace sits on many of the boards for various community groups in Middletown and volunteers his time as a mentor to a student in the Middletown schools.
In 1992, Aresco was hired by the Middletown Police Department. Aresco has been assigned to the Street Crime Unit, Investigative Services Division, and Special Investigations Unit. In 2005, he was promoted to sergeant, and assigned to the Patrol Division. In 2010, he became the supervisor of the Traffic Unit.
Petrulis was hired by the Middletown Police Department in 2005. He is a certified instructor of Defensive Tactics, Mechanical and Ballistic Breaching, Handcuffing, Baton, OC Spray, and Active Shooter.
He is assigned as a detective in the Special Investigations Unit investigating Sexual Assaults and child abuse and is a Team Leader on the Middletown Police Department SWAT team.
In November of 1994, Godwin was sworn in as a Middletown Police Officer, working in the Patrol Division. For the past six years, he has been assigned to the Traffic Unit investigating serious accidents. He is a member the Middletown Police Marine/Dive Team, as well as an adviser for the Middletown Police Explorers.
Scirpo came to Middletown from the Wethersfield and Granby police departments in 2003. He was SWAT operator on the North Central Region's Emergency Services Team. He graduated from the POST firearms instructor course in 2003 and works in the Patrol Division and is a firearms instructor for the department and a Field Training Officer.