Niskayuna

Niskayuna Town Board names new police lieutenant

Niskayuna police officer Joseph Twitty is sworn in as the department's new lieutenant by town Supervisor Yasmine Syed, with help from the lieutenant's wife, Davida.
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Niskayuna police officer Joseph Twitty is sworn in as the department's new lieutenant by town Supervisor Yasmine Syed, with help from the lieutenant's wife, Davida.

The Niskayuna Police Department has a new lieutenant, filling a void left at the department’s administrative level since the summer of 2020. 

The board approved the promotion of Detective Sgt. Joseph Twitty to lieutenant 4-0 during its Thursday night meeting. Board member John Della Ratta was not present for the vote. Twitty’s salary will be $117,457.

“You have the respect of all of your fellow officers and you have the deep and profound respect of all of the town board,” Supervisor Yasmine Syed said. “You’ve served this town admirably for decades. It’s a privilege to be able to promote you to the position of lieutenant. We know you’re going to continue to do the fantastic job you’ve always done, and to bring your demeanor of being the definition cool, calm and collected.”

Twitty did not say anything after being sworn in. However, prior to the meeting, he said he’s ready to support Police Chief Jordan Kochan and the department anyway he can.

Twitty moved from Chicago to Niskayuna in 1990 with his wife Davida. In 2000, he was hired by the town as a patrolman. He moved up through the ranks, becoming a road sergeant in May 2008, where he worked on all three shifts. In January 2015, he was promoted to detective sergeant. 

His new promotion will help fill the position left vacant since Fran Wall was promoted to interim police chief in July 2020, then subsequently retired in June 2021. 

Wall said Thursday that Twitty’s promotion is long overdue and something she wanted to do as interim chief. She said during his 21 years of service he has been an asset to the department. 

“Detective Sgt. Twitty’s broad knowledge of police work and his steady temperament have unquestionably served the department and the taxpayers of the Town of Niskayuna,” she said in a written statement. “I have been pleased and proud to work with Joe, as I believe he is a consummate professional. I wish Joe much success in his new position.”

The move means duties that had previously been handled by just Deputy Chief Mike Stevens until Kochan was named chief will now be split across the administrative leadership. The chief said prior to the meeting that public information officer to one role the new lieutenant will take on.

Kochan said he will also continue overseeing the detectives division until a new detective sergeant is named. 

As for the rest of Twitty’s duties, Kochan said he’s still working out those details as the department begins implementing new procedures and policies related to police reform.

The department will have 25 officers beginning Nov.1, due to a retirement at the end of this month. Two officers are currently out on medical leave. Kochan said he’s budgeted for a full staff of 30 officers in next year’s budget. 

Reporter Shenandoah Briere can be reached at 518-478-3320 or at [email protected]

Categories: Schenectady County, Your Niskayuna

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