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FOP's questioning of police hiring practices stirs Narberth meeting

Lodge 28 President of the Fraternal Order of Police Gavin Goschinski caused a stir at the Monday, May 14 Narberth Borough Council meeting when he expressed concerns during the public comment portion of the meeting over the way Narberth Borough officlals have been handling the hiring of police officers.

The Main Line Times reported May 15 that Goschinski, also a sergeant at the Lower Merion Police Department, was compelled to speak during public comment as a result of six potential candidates were asked to withdraw their applications after being told something found during their background checks in Lower Merion could prevent them from being hired.

The Main Line paper reported that Goschinski said candidates were then allegedly told by the borough to withdraw their withdrawals in order for the borough to get an outside party to conduct new investigations.

"What's most concerning is that no one from Narberth engaged in basic due diligence to go to [head of Lower Merion detectives] Lt. Frank Higgins and say, 'Why in the world did these guys withdraw?' Didn't anyone here have that curiosity?" Goschinski asked, according to Main Line Times.

After these remarks, Borough officials said they could not discuss the issue, and later declined to comment about the matter when asked directly by the Main Line Times.

"We view it as a personnel matter and under advice of counsel," Borough Council President Sam Quinn said at the meeting. "We are always striving to improve our processes and in that spirit I think perhaps somewhere down the line I look forward to getting together."

Quinn also said the borough values the relationship Narberth has among Lower Merion Township's departments.

When approached by Neighbors Main Line, both Goschinski and Borough President Sam Quinn declined to comment on the matter.

Goschinski question is raised during a time when Narberth has only five police officers after Officer James Conway resigned in September and Lt. Art Pavoni retired in December.

Check back with Neighbors for updates on the matter.