James Rovella

Recent Posts

National unrest sharpens CT’s focus on police-community trust

Connecticut NAACP President Scot X. Esdaile and New Haven Police Sgt. Shafiq Abdussabar engage in dialogue during a police-community forum in New Haven on July 22. This is one of several such forums that have taken place across Connecticut in the wake of police shootings and the killing of unarmed black men.

Despite enacting some of the country’s most progressive police reforms, Connecticut still faces the same questions other states do about whether police are doing enough to enforce the law effectively without infringing on the civil rights of minorities, and if they are doing enough to build trust with their communities. Continue Reading →

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Hartford police begin New Year with old civil rights problem

Graduates of a Hartford Police Department Academy class in 2012.

It was the late 1960s and many American cities were ablaze with racial tensions involving police that often resulted in rioting and violence. Hartford was no exception. The result was a lawsuit and a legal agreement for the city to make a number of changes, including hiring more minority police officers. But after more than 40 years, the police force is still bound by the agreement and struggling to more closely mirror its community. Continue Reading →

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Hartford mayor, police chief, help Obama sell policing initiative

Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra, left, outside the White House with Bishop Jeremiah Torres and Police Chief James Rovella, right.

WASHINGTON – Mayor Pedro Segarra and Hartford Police Chief James Rovella were among dozens of officials invited to the White House Thursday to help President Obama promote a policing initiative aimed at preventing the types of police shootings that touched off riots in Ferguson, Mo., and Baltimore. Continue Reading →

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Applause, and skepticism, for Malloy’s ‘second-chance society’

From left, Iran Nazario, Dennis Murphy, Mayor Pedro Segarra and Gov. Dannel P. Malloy.

James Rovella was a Hartford homicide cop in the early 1990s, when Iran Nazario ran with Los Solidos, a gang quick to defend its drug turf with drive-by shootings. Rovella left the streets for management, eventually becoming chief. Nazario went to prison. On Wednesday, they shared the same table, listening to a governor talk about second chances. Continue Reading →

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