Perhaps it was Harley Broccoli who had the most memorable and delightful duty during a recent early morning ceremony inside the Johnston Municipal Courthouse.
After Mayor Joseph Polisena, who JPD Chief Joseph P. Razza called “our department’s biggest fan and law enforcement’s number one supporter,” he requested Patrolman Andrew Broccoli “come front and center.”
A few minutes earlier, the 9-year JPD veteran officer — whose career began with the Woonsocket Police in 2012 as a Third Watch Patrolman — took the official Oath of Office from Mayor Polisena for “his well-served promotion to the rank of sergeant.”
Moments thereafter, Broccoli’s wife Harley came to the podium where she pinned her beloved husband’s new sergeant’s badge on his spicy JPD dress uniform that offered what has become a “special sense of family at many Johnston Police ceremonies.”
Thus, a host of friends, family and numerous JPD officers also applauded a man Razza said “has immersed himself in preparing for this moment and it takes a great commitment and discipline to come out on top. I also know that Andrew didn’t do it alone, he had the love, support and backing of his family to guide him, so today is also their day.”
That statement brought even wider and prouder smiles to the face of his wife Harley, who held the couple’s 2-year-old daughter Ryleigh and his mother Donna Broccoli.
Razza said Andrew Broccoli has “worked admirably as a patrol officer for the first watch shift, where he has earned multiple commendations including the prestigious Town Council Medal.”
He also became a field training officer in 2017 and a member of the Special Response Team in 2020.
In October of 2013, Sgt. Broccoli transferred to the Johnston Police Department to serve in the community in which he was raised and lives.
Sgt. Broccoli completed his Bachelor’s Degree in Justice Studies from Rhode Island College in 2014. He also takes pride in assisting with organized community events such as the JPD’s Annual Golf Tournament, which Razza explained “joins police and members of the community in a manner outside of normal interactions and proceeds from this event help assist Johnston Youth Sports programs as well as other honorable charities.”
Sgt. Broccoli is the son of Donna and Robert Broccoli. He and Harley are soon expecting their second child.
Thus, as Mayor Polisena and Chief Razza emphasized: “The promotion not only comes with increased pay, but more importantly more responsibility and holding those you supervise accountable. The Sergeant’s position in any law enforcement agency is where the rubber meets the road. There is no more crucial, critical and pivotal role in any police organization than that of sergeant and those chevrons signify the strength of rank.”
In closing the ceremony, which included remembering the 145 officers killed in the line of duty this year, Razza said, “Once again, congratulations Andrew to you and your family. You won’t be alone in learning or acclimating to your new duties and responsibilities because you will have the support of your peers, your Chief and your Mayor.”
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