North Haven Deputy Police Chief Jonathan R. Mulhern (pictured), a highly respected and experienced supervisor in diverse areas of police work, is expected to be named Branford’s next deputy police chief, Police Chief Kevin Halloran told the Eagle Monday.
Mulhern emerged as the top candidate in a field of 26 candidates seeking the department’s second highest spot. In recent months, seven of them were interviewed by the Police Commission, which was briefed on the Mulhern hiring last night. Mulhern was offered the post on condition that he meet certain standards and requirements in the hiring of a lateral transfer police officer, Halloran said at the meeting. All the candidates were screened by other police chiefs from around the state to make certain they were qualified for the position.
“It was a win-win scenario for the department,” Chief Halloran said. “All of the candidates were extremely qualified. His (Mulhern’s) personality, in-depth familiarity with contemporary policing strategies and techniques, as well as his intimate knowledge of municipal process is what I believe swayed the Commission to choose him. I believe the transition will be seamless as changing his shoulder patch.”
The town has been without a deputy police chief since 2012 when then Deputy Chief Tom Fowler left to take a job as police chief of Salisbury, Massachusetts. Given the expected retirements of the department’s top three police officials over the next three years, the police commission and Chief Halloran have urged the hiring of a new deputy police chief.
The first top police official to retire will be Capt. Geoffrey Morgan who is expected to retire this August. Capt. Ray Dunbar and Chief Halloran are expected to retire over the next few years, Dunbar in August, 2020 and Halloran in April, 2021.
Mulhern’s multi-year contract must first be approved by the Board of Finance and the Board of Selectmen.
Mulhern’s Career in North Haven
Mulhern, 47, comes to Branford with 26 years of experience with the North Haven Police Department where he began his career in 1992. A third generation police officer, his grandfather served as police chief in Hamden, his father is a police captain and his brothers currently serve in area police departments. He lives in North Haven with his wife, Alycia, and their two sons.
He rose through the ranks at both police and educational levels. He became a sergeant seven years after he started and then served as a supervisor in the Detective Division. Two years later, he was promoted to the rank of lieutenant and was assigned as the commander of the evening shift. In April 2011, he was appointed to the position of deputy chief to serve under Chief Thomas J. McLoughlin.
Mulhern also served nine years as the commander of the regional SWAT Team. He currently is the Law Enforcement vice chairman for the DEMHS Regional Emergency Planning Team Steering Committee.
He has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Central Connecticut State University and holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration and Management from Albertus Magnus College. He is also a 2009 graduate of the 238th Session of the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Virginia.
During his tenure, the North Haven Police Department developed an impressive Canine (K9) unit and it is hoped that Mulhern will restore Branford’s canine unit.