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The two men who were sworn in as new Chester County Detectives Monday will likely not be often compared to those behemoths who make a living on the gridiron scoring touchdowns and sacking quarterbacks.
But for county District Attorney Thomas Hogan, their selection was something like that of choosing a football player the team wants to add to bolster the line-up.
“It’s a little like the NFL draft,” Hogan said following a brief swearing-in ceremony for new county detectives James F. Ciliberto and Thomas J. Goggin before President Judge James P. MacElree II in stately Courtroom Two of the county Justice Center. “You take the best athlete.”
Ciliberto and Goggin will be two of the new detectives who will fill vacancies in the department following the retirement of three veteran county detectives – Sgt, Joseph Daniels, Sgt. Jeffrey Gordon, and Detective Frank Martin. The third appointment is expected next month, Hogan said,
“Jim Ciliberto and Tom Goggin are experienced, aggressive, and dedicated investigators,” Hogan extolled in a news release prior to the ceremony, which was attended by an estimated 75 members of the prosecutor’s office, the law enforcement community, and family and friends of the new detectives.
“They have worked with and earned the respect of law enforcement throughout Pennsylvania. The Chester County Detectives are continuing to add to their already strong ranks,” Hogan said.
“These are experienced, intelligent, but most of all, these are honorable, detectives,” Hogan told MacElree.
In addressing those in the courtroom, MacElree, a former district attorney, said that both the prosecutor’s office and the county detectives, “have a long and proud history of excellence.” The detectives, he said, “take great pride in helping other departments in the county perfect their cases and get them to court.
“I know both of you have tremendous high character and strong qualifications,” he said to Ciliberto and Goggin. “I expect to see good work out of you.”
Hogan said that his office had received “tons” of applicants for the vacant positions, from as far away as California. In the end, he said, it was beneficial to have highly qualified applicants from the county who knew their way around the various communities here.
In addition to having a working knowledge of the various aspects of the county – farm families, urban atmospheres, suburban bedroom neighborhoods – both men had succeeded in making a name for themselves in police work.
Prior to joining the Detectives’ office, Ciliberto was a trooper with the state police Avondale barracks for over 20 years. He has extensive experience working homicide, child abuse, and other major cases. Hogan said former DA Anthony Sarcione, now a Common Pleas judge, called Ciliberto “the finest trooper he ever worked with.”
Ciliberto is a graduate of West Chester University, earning his degree in history. He has been named Trooper of the Year on multiple occasions. Hogan said.
Goggin has over 20 years with the Phoenixville Police Department, dealing with street crime, child abuse, and complex investigations, the top prosecutor told MacElree. He received his undergraduate degree in Organizational Management from Eastern College and his master’s degree in Criminal Justice from West Chester University.
Hogan said he was glad to get not just experienced investigators, but those with a balanced approach both from the law enforcement and geographical backgrounds.
“You look for a good mix. In this case, it is an added bonus” to have a candidate with experience in the state police and who worked in the southern end of the county, and a municipal police officer who spent his career in the northern end.
The men, after being sworn in by MacElree, received their badges and credentials from Chief James Vito and Lt. Kevin Dykes.