GREENE— The Village of Greene Police Department went through significant changes in 2014, which initiated the development of a new and improved department for 2015.
After the resignation and arrest of the former Officer in Charge last spring, Officer Donald Brown took charge. Brown had worked part-time for the Village of Greene Police Department since July of 2010.
The Officer in Charge is a lifetime resident of Greene. He graduated from Greene Central School and went on to attend Broome Community College, until he became a corrections officer in 1982.
In 1985, he took the civil service exam to become a police officer in Johnson City. While working as an officer, he entered the New York State Police Zone 6 Academy in 1986. After graduating in 1987, he became a trooper in NYSP Troop C, where he worked until he retired in June of 2010.
Brown enjoyed growing up and living in Greene his entire life, so he decided to help keep Greene the way he remembered it. “Greene is a quaint, safe community and we want to keep it that way,” said Brown.
“We are more community-based than some departments and continue the tradition of keeping Greene a nice community to live in,” said Brown. “As much as the police side is important, the service side is just as important.”
In 2014, Brown hired two new part-time officers, who have both served as deputies for the Chenango County Sheriff's Office since 2003.
He hired Bret Bowen, a lifetime resident of Greene, and Dave Castle, who grew up in Coventry and moved to Greene as an adult. Brown liked that both men were Greene residents, because he thinks it helps them better serve their community.
“I worked with both of them when I was a trooper. I knew how they worked, so I knew they were a good fit for the department,” said Brown.
Brown also promoted a part-time officer to a full-time position this past year. He hopes to groom the recently promoted officer into the next Officer in Charge one day in the future.
Full-time Officer Jeffrey Messina, 32 of Greene is also a lifetime resident of Greene and worked as a deputy for the county. He was hired by the Greene PD in 2013 as a part-time officer.
“He was already working for us. Plus we wanted someone who lives in the area with knowledge of residents and local businesses, which is of a community-oriented policing mindset,” said Brown...