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Candia police force grows to full strength

CANDIA — After months of discussion and delays, the Candia Board of Selectmen voted to hire a new police officer and bring the police department back up to full strength.

Police Chief Michael McGillen said he was relieved to have the whole process behind him.

“I just want to move forward and get along with all parties involved,” McGillen said, referring to the contentious nature of the hiring process.

At a cost of roughly $38,000 in salary, the board, in a 3-1 vote with one abstention, approved McGillen’s recommended candidate, Thomas Terilli, to fill the vacant spot in the department.“It took longer than some hoped, but it worked out OK in the end,” said Frederick Kelley, chairman of the Board of Selectmen.

McGillen previously expressed disappointment with the selectmen after they didn’t bring Terilli’s hiring up for a vote at the previous selectmen’s meeting. Kelley said he delayed the hiring because without a full board present, he was not confident the vote would have gone the way McGillen wanted it to.

“The chief was pleased; he likes that it went through. It is finally done and over with,” Kelley said.

Board member Amanda Soares, who voted against the hiring, previously said she felt the town is safe enough and does not need to spend the money on an extra officer. McGillen has been adamant that a full staff of seven officers is needed to maintain the safety of the town.

“I feel that this officer does make the town more safe. A strong police presence is a major deterrent for crime. I want him out on the road so we can utilize him and so people can see him,” McGillen said.Terilli, who currently works full time as a security guard for Sears and part time for the Greenfield Police Department, will start his training in three weeks so that he can be out on patrol within two months, McGillen said. Terilli’s hiring, which involves a one-year probationary period, is dependent on him passing the Police Academy’s 14-week course this winter.“It is important that he is on the street this summer before he attends the police academy, because that is our busiest time of the year,” McGillen said.

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