About the Prosecutor
The county prosecutor is a constitutional officer, nominated and appointed by the Governor with the consent of the State Senate. County prosecutors serve in their individual jurisdictions as the foremost representative of the executive branch of government in the enforcement of the criminal law. The various county prosecutors have been given the power to use all reasonable and lawful diligence for the detection, arrest, indictment and conviction of offenders against the laws of the State. Each prosecutor is given, by statute, within his or her jurisdiction, the same powers as the Attorney General of the State.
In order to complete the mission of detection, arrest, indictment and conviction of persons committing crimes within a county, the prosecutor employs a staff of lawyers, investigators and support personnel. The members of the staff, in addition to performing their assigned duties, must cooperate with each other, municipal police departments and the public. The Hudson County Prosecutor's Office currently has a staff in excess of 350 that includes assistant prosecutors, detectives, and clerical and support personnel. The investigative division of the office is supplemented by officers employed by the County Sheriff and the county's 12 municipalities. It is the second largest county prosecutor's office in the State of New Jersey and the second busiest county prosecutor's office in the State.
Prior to the 1947 Constitution, the county prosecutor was known as the prosecutor of the pleas of the county (RS 2:182-1 Revised in 1877). From 1948 and until 1970 the Office was a part time position. In 1970, the prosecutor and all assistants to the prosecutor became full time employees of the people of Hudson County. Geoffrey Gaulkin, served as prosecutor from 1970 until 1973; James T. O'Halloran served as prosecutor from 1974 until 1980; Harold J. Ruvoldt, Jr. served as prosecutor from 1980 until 1986; Paul M. DePascale served as prosecutor from 1986 until 1991; Carmen Messano served as prosecutor from 1991 until 1997. Fred J. Theemling served as prosecutor from 1997 until 2002; Edward J. De Fazio served as prosecutor from 2002 until 2012. Former Prosecutors Gaulkin, O'Halloran, DePascale, Messano, Theemling and DeFazio were subsequently appointed to serve as judges of the Superior Court of New Jersey. Judge Gaulkin, Judge O'Halloran and Judge Theemling have since retired.
On the pages contained on this web site you will find information concerning the operation of the Hudson County Prosecutor's Office and issues of interest to the public. We welcome your comments and input, so please send us an e-mail at email@example.com or contact the office by phone or mail.