New Jersey

Christie appoints new leader for New Jersey State Police

TRENTON, N.J. - New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has announced a replacement for the head of the state police, who is retiring.

The Republican on Wednesday announced that Lt. Col. Patrick Callahan will succeed Col. Rick Fuentes in the department's top job.

"We are lucky to have such an accomplished law enforcement professional who will continue the tradition of excellence established by Rick Fuentes," Christie said.

Fuentes is retiring on November 1 after leading the department since being appointed superintendent by Democratic Gov. Jim McGreevey in 2003. He has served in the department since 1978.

"I want to thank Colonel Fuentes, who has served our state with honor and integrity, for his strong leadership through the many challenges we have faced, including Superstorm Sandy, and wish him well in the future," Christie said.

Callahan enlisted in the state police in April 1995 and serves as deputy superintendent of operations. He also served as recovery bureau chief after Superstorm Sandy.

"I am truly humbled and honored that Gov. Christie has the trust and confidence in me to afford me this opportunity and I look forward to the continued privilege of serving the citizens of New Jersey," Callahan said.

He is the son of retired state police Major Mick Callahan, who served as chief of staff for Col. Clinton Pagano.

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