New officer joins Cromwell Police Department ‘family’
CROMWELL — The Cromwell Police Department welcomed a new member this week, a former regional director for Ben & Jerry’s who is about to embark upon a career in law enforcement.
Coltin Jespersen was worn in during a ceremony held this week in the atrium of Town Hall.
On Monday, Jespersen will enter the Municipal police Academy to begin nearly six months of intensive training.
A number of his fellow officers, a contingent of Cromwell firefighters and several town employees and department heads were on hand to witness the swearing in ceremony.
Jespersen’s gleaming silver badge was pinned on the lapel of his suit by his brother Chase, as his grandmother Joan looked on approvingly.
“My grandmother‘s my whole life,” Jespersen said after the ceremony. “She taught us our work ethic when we were very young.”
In turn, Joan Jespersen described Colt and Chase as “good boys.”
His aunt, Robin, and uncle, Rich, were also present for the ceremony, standing in for Jespersen’s parents, Pat and Barry, who were vacationing in Jamaica.
A Torrington native, Jespersen is the first person in his family to undertake a career in law enforcement.
After Town Clerk Joan Ahlquist administered the oath of office to Jespersen, Mayor Enzo Faienza welcomed him to “a great community, with a great department and a great chief.”
“Good Luck. I know you will do a great job,” Faienza added.
The fact Jespersen gave up a career at Ben & Jerry’s “to pursue a career in law enforcement…shows a lot of integrity and a strong work ethic,” Police Chief Denise Lamontagne said.
Jespersen said he had worked for the iconic ice cream brand for three years, and had managed four accounts in Connecticut and one in New York, overseeing 75 employees.
Poised and looking very much at ease, Jespersen then stepped forward to speak.
While some new recruits seem intent upon saying just “thanks” to their families and the other onlookers, this was not so for Jespersen.
He looked at the assemblage and said: “I’m looking forward to getting to know you all a little better.”
Describing his appointment as “a honor and pleasure, Jespersen said, “I hope I will be able to become an integral part of the family of Cromwell.”
He acknowledged he had applied to other departments.
But, he said, “I felt very comfortable here in Cromwell. It was the right fit from the very beginning.”
“I could not be happier than to be joining this ‘family,’” he said.
Capt. Kevin A. VanderSloot said Jespersen first came to his attention when he was delivering a safety lecture at the TPC River Highlands in advance of the Travelers Championship.
A woman who knew the captain said her neighbor was very anxious to become involved in law enforcement.
VanderSloot gave the woman one of his business card and told her to have the neighbor call him.
Two days later, Jespersen did call, starting the process that led to his swearing-in on Tuesday.
“He asked me if there was anything I needed to know. I told him, ‘We’ll teach your law, but life experience is often the best experience.’”
What followed was a battery of tests, including a physical agility test, which Jespersen, a hiker and marathon runner, handled with ease.
The final hurdle was “a rigorous background check” conducted by Detective Sgt. Steven Penn.
“Everyone has been totally supportive,” Jespersen said.
“My family is completely on board, 100 percent, and it’s the same thing with the guys in the department,” he said. “I’m really excited. I really feel I can do it; I really do.”