Political Fix For Disgraced Ex-Cop?

UNION COUNTY—A politically-connected former police officer who resigned in disgrace is said to be getting ready to have his criminal record erased so he can land a county job that will preserve his taxpayer-funded pension benefits.

Genarro Mirabella allegedly committed crimes captured on video but he was allowed to resign as a Garwood police officer, a job he has for 17 years, instead of facing prosecution that may have resulted in a six-month jail term.

Now it is alleged that Mirabella is trying to have the investigation records expunged so he could obtain a job in the Union County Court House that will enable him to extend his enrollment in the state’s Police and Firefighter Pension System three more years—which would entitle him to lifetime health benefits at taxpayer expense.

According to a report by Tina Renna of The County Watchers, Mirabella is allegedly scheduled to appear at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 16 before Superior Court Judge Joseph P. Donohue, who will consider whether the records should be expunged.

Donohue is the brother-in-law of Assemblyman Joseph Cryan, who is also employed as a top deputy for Union County Sheriff Ralph Froehlich and wields considerable influence as political boss in Union Township.

The former Garwood police officer is the brother of Union County Freeholder Alexander Mirabella and son of former Elizabeth Police Chief Gene Mirabella.

Sources say Cryan has significantly politicized the Sheriff’s Office since he was hired by Frioehlich in 2002, seven months after he lost his job as a bartender when his father’s Metuchen tavern went out of business owing $500,000 in back taxes.

Froehlich said he initially refused to hire Cryan. The sheriff said he later did so to fulfill a request of county political boss Charlotte Defilippo, who was partners with Cryan in a title insurance agency that shut down while under investigation as part of a state Attorney General’s office corruption probe.

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