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Elizabeth Police Director resigns amid controversy over alleged racist, sexist slurs

Posted at 6:26 PM, Apr 30, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-30 18:26:32-04

ELIZABETH, NJ — Just about one week after the Union County Prosecutor's office concluded and found credibility surrounding accusations of racism and misogyny by Elizabeth's Police Director James Cosgrove, he submitted his resignation.

Mayor J. Christian Bollwage said he still supports the man he hired 21 years ago. Bollwage spoke to PIX11 Tuesday shortly after sitting down with New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal, who pushed for Cosgrove's removal.

Civil Rights attorney Josh McMahon represents several of the officers within the Elizabeth Police Department who filed complaints with the Prosecutor's office.
He believes the Mayor protected Cosgrove for years. His clients, he said, broke their silence months ago and described a hostile work environment.  Cosgrover allegedly called his own African American officers the n--word and his female offices the c--word.

"It's a culture of lawlessness and no accountability.  If you're one of the in people and favorites of the police director you get taken care of.  There's no accountability for you, no punishment, you get promotions.  If you are not someone who is politically affiliated with the police director you are punished," said McMahon.

Elizabeth residents we spoke with said they're thankful to finally have some oversight over a department many believe has gone rogue.