Criminal Investigations Division
Criminal Investigations Division Commander
Captain James McKendrick
Lieutenant Courtney Ellington
(click for bio)
Detective Sergeant Jeffrey Perez
Detective Sergeant John Michener
The Criminal Investigations Division is commanded by Captain James McKendrick and has three supervisors assigned to the unit. The Division has a Lieutenant, 2 Detective Sergeants, 7 Detectives, 2 Police Officers and 2 civilian staff members.
The Criminal Investigations Division consists of two units of police detectives, police officers and civilian support staff that work toward the police department’s mission of making Willingboro a safe place to live and work. This is accomplished by diligent follow-up investigation of assigned cases and proactive investigation on tips and information passed to the Division by concerned citizens. Through these efforts we have resolved many issues the citizens of Willingboro have targeted as being detrimental to the quality of life in Willingboro.
The largest unit within the Criminal Investigations Division is the Case Detective Unit. Under the direction of D/Sgt. Jeffrey Perez, this unit of five detectives is annually assigned between 1,000 and 1,200 cases for follow-up investigation. In general, uniform patrol officers are the first to have contact with victims of crime. These officers conduct the initial investigation and prepare reports for follow-up investigation by the Case Detective Unit. Cases assigned include criminal mischief, missing persons, aggravated assaults, sexual assaults, burglaries, robberies and murder. Upon the successful completion of the detective’s investigation, suspects are arrested and a report is forwarded to the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office for review and trial.
The second unit within the Criminal Investigations Division is the Street Crimes Unit. This unit of two detectives and two police officers is overseen by D/Sgt. John Michener and is responsible for the monitoring of gang activity, the investigation of illegal activity by gang members, and the detection and apprehension of individuals affiliated with the manufacture, sale and transportation of illegal drugs within Willingboro. When the Street Crimes Unit receives information of gang or narcotics activity, they set up surveillance to record and monitor the illegal activity at that location. Once enough probable cause is obtained, an arrest of the suspect(s) can be made immediately or a search warrant is applied for and executed at a later date. Upon execution of the search warrant the suspect(s) are arrested, the scene is processed, property is seized and all evidence and reports are submitted to the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office for trial.
In addition to the Street Crimes Unit, D/Sgt. Michener oversees a unit of police officers know as the PACE Unit - the Pro-Active Community Engagement Unit. These officers pro-actively patrol the neighborhoods utilizing the latest information on crime trends formulated from the intelligence from our Crime Analyst as well as intelligence from Street Crimes Unit and Case Detective Unit. These officers are also tasked with interacting and engaging with our residents at public events, community meetings, while on patrol, etc., to further enhance the positive relationship we have with our community.
The civilian staff members are the “face and voice” of the Detective Division. They greet and assist citizens and members of other police agencies who call or enter the division each day. They are responsible for data entry, supply management and transcribing statements.