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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Atkinson loses another officer, but hiring has begun

From the Eagle Tribune;
October 20, 2011
Atkinson loses another officer, but hiring has begun
By Cara Hogan

ATKINSON — Officer Christopher VanHirtum is the third officer to leave the police department in the past six months.

Yesterday was VanHirtum's last at the department, after three years on the job. Chief Philip Consentino said VanHirtum's new job will be with the Windham Police Department, just a few miles away.

"Windham is more money, closer to home and I believe he has more opportunities for advancement up there than he does here," Consentino said.

Before coming to Atkinson, VanHirtum worked at the Newton Police Department from 2005 to 2008. He was initially hired in Atkinson to replace the late Cpl. John Lapham, who died of acute leukemia.

There has been a lot of turnover at the Atkinson Police Department, but Consentino said he hopes that will stop now. Lt. William Baldwin and Officer Justin Paquette both left for other police jobs. Detective Sgt. Philip Farrar officially retired last month, but has stayed on part-time to help the department.

The department was down to just two full-time officers at one point, but the Board of Selectmen authorized Consentino to hire a few new officers last month.

"I've got Officer Nicholas Fiset, who started last Tuesday," Consentino said.

"Selectmen wanted the background investigation done on the two individuals I brought in last week. Hopefully, Monday night, they'll make it official and appoint those two."

The two officers are Detective Sgt. Patrick Caggiano, who will work full time, and Sgt. Scott Anderson, who will work part-time. Consentino said Caggiano will make a big difference, since he will fill Fararr's position as an administrator, handling the day-to-day operations of the police department.

"I still need two more full-time officers," Consentino said. "We're going through applications we received and seeing if we can fill those two positions."

But he's said happy to see some progress.

"The department is in much better shape than it was a month ago," he said. "The selectmen have helped me out considerably by putting Fiset on."

The department threw VanHirtum a small going-away party yesterday after he made his last arrest as an Atkinson officer


Anonymous said...

Good luck with your new job.

Get out while you can.

Anonymous said...

He made an arrest?

I expect to see this in the police log on Friday or we will dismiss it as misinformation.

Anonymous said...

The department threw him a party? Glad the staff knew about it!

Anonymous said...

Good luck Chris, we'll miss you.

Anonymous said...

Atkinson police log. Wednesday.

coast clear quiet southerly breeze 4 miles per hour bald head dry donations steady officers blogging more parties we need raises over and out

Anonymous said...

Has anyone ever wondered or asked why Chris really left???? Quite possibly it has to do with the current and most recent former BOS. That story will surely follow when Ms Hogan asks the right question to the right person. :)

Anonymous said...

I highly doubt it. These cops were told that they don't report to the BOS and they believed it.

They worked in a dysfunctional dept that is the embarassment of the state and they left for real jobs where they didnt have to be owned. They can regain some self respect elsewhere.

Anonymous said...