The Essex Fells Police Department was conceived in 1903 and consisted of two Marshals who patrolled on foot. A police motorcycle was the first motorized unit the borough acquired in 1916. In 1921, the department purchased its first marked police car. Calls received at police headquarters were relayed by telephone to The Newark Police Department who dispatched a police unit to calls for service. The department’s own two-way radio was installed in 1960 and Essex Fells began dispatching a police unit from their own police headquarters. In 1998, the department transitioned to a two car minimum to patrol the approximately 1.3 square mile borough. The department currently keeps a two car minimum with a sergeant on patrol as well bringing it to 3 cars on patrol.
Currently, the department consists of thirteen men and women. A chief, captain, three sergeants and eight officers make up the table of organization. Officers are on patrol at all times. All 9-1-1 calls and telephone calls are received at The North Caldwell Police Department who currently handles police dispatch for Essex Fells.
All officers within the department are well trained and many hold certifications way outside the mandated NJ Attorney General Guideline training. This training includes, Drug Recognition Expert, Emergency Medical Technician, LEAD, Standardized Field Sobriety Testing, Alcotest, Crash Investigations and many more. The department also has two officers assigned to the detective bureau to investigate crimes and incidents within the borough.
The Essex Fells Police Department has acquired several pieces of equipment to assist with safety. Some of this equipment also assists with notifying residents as well as through traffic with important information.
The department currently has 6 police vehicles, a light tower to assist with events after dark as well as police details, an all-terrain vehicle to patrol the trotter tract and navigate the borough in inclimate weather, a message board used to alert motorists to certain traffic situations and/or messages, and a firearms trailer to assist officers with range qualifications and active shooter drills.