Former HPD Officer speaks


hoboken pd janet aiello - Former HPD Officer speaksWe all know the Hoboken S.W.A.T. team has made news more than once recently, from alleged racist actions, to racy photos that pictured officers partying with topless ladies and Hooters girls. Those recent events caused the SWAT team to be disbanded, and resulted in a new Public Safety Director Bill Bergin being appointed to watch over the city’s Fire and Police Departments.

Retired Hoboken Police Lieutenant Janet Aiello (formerly John Patrick Aiello – prior to sex-change operation) contacted Hoboken411 with this letter. Janet had her run-ins with the HPD too (see this comment left by a 411 reader.)

Here she shares her viewpoint about the recent news, and her experiences in Hoboken.

Hoboken SWAT team takes down Alabama Hooters!

“After 25 years of dedicated, honorable and distinguished service to the HPD, I was not surprised that the police department would make national headlines by such asinine antics of a few of the “privileged one’s.” I was sworn in about eight months after Carmen La Bruno and since that time, I cannot ever remember him as being a ‘street cop.’ For whatever reason, he was in some cushy job out of harms way, while the rest of us patrolled a city in strife during the period of Vietnam, riots and disregard for the public order. His appointments to rank always seemed to take place in broom closets so as to shut out those who also passed their promotional exams in the top ten, myself included.

I am not writing this letter out of anger, because I purged that which would have destroyed me a long time ago. No, this letter is written because I know first person, the way La Bruno and his favorites can be homophobic, gender phobic and distrusting of anyone outside of his myopic point of views and beliefs. I retired 01 December 1997, not because I wanted to but, because I no longer wanted to be the ring mistress of HPD’s circus.

In my entire career, all I wanted to do was serve, protect and genuinely respect the community and people of the City of Hoboken. Sadly, I could not because politics and ignorance by those chosen to uphold the law, thought of themselves as above the law. Therefore, I would have lost everything I worked so hard for those twenty five years.

There is a phrase in the transsexual community; “someone once said, that life is a journey of who you are now, and who you really want to be”. In answer to a members question, I have retired and moved to NYC in 1995 and live in East Harlem. I am out and proud to be a part of both the transsexual and lesbian communities and stay active in many events as possible. By the way, I guess that all of you want to know if I completed my full transition to female, huh? The answer is YES. Shortly after retirement, I underwent all the surgical procedures that now and forever have completed my person as a living breathing FEMALE. God bless all of you and may you find the means to change things that some say can never be changed and embrace the fluidity and wonders of life.

Lieutenant Janet Aiello (Ret.)
Division Commander
Transportation and Traffic”

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Friday, October 24, 2008 4:32 pm

I found this article to be very interesting…I am the sister of John/Janet and I had made the news as being very supportive to my brother back in 1995 when all of this hit the media..I would like to say that YES my brother served the Hoboken Community with dignity and respect, I will nor can I take that away from him/her…but what saddens me is that 25 yrs prior to this “Coming Out Of Closet” issue John married a woman and fathered 2 children knowing he was “different”.This dicision has caused alot of Pain, Heartache, and embarrassment to all who were in this family…(Me included)but out of love for my brother I tried to be there for support…This has cause my relationship with my niece and nephew and sister in law to crumble…It saddens me today to know that John/Janet shut all the people who loved him out of his life by making the choices he has made…Although it was diagnosed as an illness (genderdysforia) I think it was very selfish of him to go into a marriage knowing who he REALLY was…I have not beeen in contact with John/Janet since 1998 nor do I ever plan to be..But I do wish Him/her well in life…but to disown a family for no reason is very sad…I have since relocated and moved on with my life..As far as the HPD, my dad was an officer from 1953 until 1967 and it didnt surprise me the way they handled John/Janets situation..I… Read more »

Friday, December 28, 2007 12:43 pm

There plenty of really stupid rules and regulations that cover uniform services, and yes not wearing a hat while rolling up on a scene is one of them, they are never enforced unless someone is looking to break balls. But what happens the accused files a grievance and in the prelim stages the hearing body throws it out and tells the dept to knock off the bs

strand tramp
strand tramp
Friday, December 28, 2007 12:37 pm

they have to wear their hats during fights or they are brought up on charges? now wait a minute, it’s gotta be tough to keep your hat on during a fight, unless it has a chin strap i guess. there is NO WAY a cop should have to try to keep track of their hat during a fight. it’s a distraction and could be fatal! i noticed that the NJ State Troopers have hats that have chin straps, but they don’t pull them under their chin. i always figured they had the chin strap because of the wind from the cars on the highways where they patrol. but if thay was the case then why don’t they pull the chin strap down under their chin instead of just letting it fall below their nose? but let’s say they did pull it down under their chin…can they still be brought up on charges if they’re not wearing their hat during a fight because the chin strap broke during the fight or if the criminal knocked it off on purpose? just say the criminal tries to distract the cop by knocking off his hat so that he can run away…then he couldn’t be brought up on charges right? and what if thhe fight is inside a home? you’re supposed to take your hat off in a home right? or if they tipped their hat to a lady, but then got in a fight with the lady, then there is NO WAY the… Read more »

Mama Luke
Mama Luke
Friday, December 28, 2007 12:09 pm

well you have to love the fact that some cops, in the past, were brought up on charges for not wearing their hats, during fights, major incidents they drove up on and such. But now this is an issue that will be brushed under a rug because of those involved.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007 6:47 pm

Janet knew who she was, is. She was very brave. I can’t image how hard it was for her. Officer Aiello stood up to the daily riducule of a bunch of thick headed, narrow minded, throw backs. She can act as an inspiration to the officers in question, and to any one of us.

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