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Governor Murphy Announces James Sarkos as Acting Chief of the Atlantic City Police Department


TRENTON –Governor Phil Murphy today announced James Sarkos as the Acting Chief of the Atlantic City Police Department. Sarkos, currently a deputy chief, serves as Interim Officer in Charge and will assume the position as Acting Chief following the appointment on July 27th, by the Director of the Division of Local Government Services, Jacquelyn Suárez, as permitted under the Municipal Stabilization and Recovery Act.  

“I am pleased to announce James Sarkos as Acting Chief of the Atlantic City Police Department,” said Governor Murphy. “Throughout his tenure as Interim Officer in Charge, Deputy Chief Sarkos has distinguished himself as an exemplary leader of the Atlantic City Police Department and the community he has committed his life to protect. He has made progress in strengthening the relationship between law enforcement and the community they serve, and I am confident he will continue to be a valuable partner in our shared mission to see Atlantic City thrive.” 

“Interim Officer Sarkos’ collaboration with Division staff on the development of a new deployment plan designed to enhance the life of Atlantic City’s residents and visitors demonstrates his innovative leadership skills and effective management style,” said Director Suárez. “This new deployment plan is designed to include CITISTAT and COMPSTAT programs that have been proven successful in many cities throughout the country. Atlantic City residents will have the opportunity to participate in bi-weekly meetings with the ACPD, Atlantic City officials, and community leaders on joint initiatives focused on problem solving, quality of life issues, and criminal activity that will make Atlantic City a better place to live, work, and play.” 

“As Interim Officer in Charge, Deputy Chief Sarkos has led the Atlantic City Police Department with honor and integrity,” said Senator Vince Polistina. “Atlantic City and New Jersey are lucky to have him as Acting Chief of the Atlantic City Police Department as he works to make our state stronger and safer. I congratulate him and thank him for his service as he takes on this new role.”  

“Deputy Chief Sarkos is an honorable and accomplished leader who has demonstrated a real commitment to public service and cares deeply for the community he serves,” said Assemblyman Don Guardian. “I am confident that he will lead the department with a strong sense of principle. I look forward to seeing his future accomplishments as Acting Chief of the Atlantic City Police Department.”  

“I have shown unwavering support for Chief Sarkos from day one,” said Mayor Marty Small. “I believe in upward mobility from the ranks and this decision shows that. I have full faith in his ability to make meaningful changes to our department and be the true leader that we need for the fine men and women in blue of the Atlantic City Police Department.”  

"I am grateful for the continued confidence placed in me by city and state leadership,” said incoming Acting Chief James Sarkos. “I look forward to continuing to serve the residents and visitors of this great city. It remains my honor to lead the dedicated and courageous Officers of the Atlantic City Police Department."  

James A. Sarkos is the Interim Officer in Charge of the Atlantic City Police Department and has served in that capacity since October 1, 2020. Deputy Chief Sarkos started his law enforcement career in 1995 as a Class One Special Law Enforcement Officer (S.L.E.O.) for the Ventnor Police Department.  He worked as a Class Two S.L.E.O. for the Wildwood Police Department during the summers of 1996-1999.  He was hired as a full-time police officer for the Linwood Police Department in October 1999.  In October 2000, he started his career with the Atlantic City Police Department.  Promoted to sergeant in 2006, lieutenant in 2011, captain in 2016, and deputy chief in 2018, he has supervised in the Patrol Division, Criminal Investigations Section, and Special Investigations Section.  He has also served on the S.W.A.T. Team as an operator, team leader, and commander and served as a patrol officer and vice detective earlier in his career.  

Sarkos has received 15 departmental commendations throughout his career, 12 awards from the PBA, including three life saving medals and supervisor of the year, a valor award from the American Legion, two valor awards, and a certificate of commendation from the 200 Club, State of N.J. General Assembly Citation. Sarkos was also recognized by the Bangladeshi Association of Atlantic County for dedication and services to the Atlantic City Community, received certificates of appreciation from Stockton University and the United States Secret Service, and was the recipient of the Atlantic Cape Community College President's Distinguished Alumni Award.       

Deputy Chief Sarkos holds an Associates of Science Degree in Criminal Justice from Atlantic Cape Community College, a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminal Justice from Stockton University, and a Master of Arts degree from Seton Hall University Police Graduates Studies Program in Human Resources Training and Development. He is also a graduate of the New Jersey Association of Chiefs of Police West Point Command and Leadership Program and Rutgers University / NJ Civil Service Commission Certified Public Manager Program. 

For a picture of James Sarkos, click here