McKeesport police Chief Adam Alfer, police Officers Sebastian Cencich, Nicholas Probola, Charles Thomas Jr. and Sheena Leszczynski, and McKeesport Mayor Michael Cherepko. (Tube City Almanac photo)
McKeesport City Council welcomed four new full-time police officers and congratulated two other first-responders on their recent promotions.
At Wednesday's meeting, police Chief Adam Alfer introduced police Officers Sebastian Cencich, Nicholas Probola, Charles Thomas Jr. and Sheena Leszczynski. All were hired 12 months ago as part-time McKeesport police officers and have recently been made full-time in the bureau, Alfer said.
In addition, Detective Sidney Summers of the narcotics squad has been promoted to sergeant, Mayor Michael Cherepko said.
"We have a lot of pride in our police department in the city of McKeesport," he said. "Don't get me wrong --- we're not perfect --- but we don't have a lot of the issues that some of the other communities do."
Cherepko credited the leadership of Alfer and retired police Chief Bryan Washowich, as well as a deeply ingrained culture of community policing. Full-time city police officers are required to live in McKeesport, and as Cherepko noted, many participate in local activities, including youth athletics and social organizations.
Alfer said that each of the new full-time officers had previous experience in other Mon Valley departments before coming to McKeesport. Cencich had worked with the Charleroi Regional police, Thomas in Clairton, Leszczynski in East Pittsburgh and Probola in East Pittsburgh and Edgewood.
McKeesport fire Chief Jeff Tomovcsik, newly appointed Deputy Chief Jeff List and Cherepko. (Tube City Almanac photo)
Also re-introduced to McKeesport city council was new Deputy Fire Chief Jeff List. List, previously a captain in the fire bureau, served as interim chief before the appointment of current fire Chief Jeff Tomovcsik. He replaces Deputy Fire Chief Charles Margliotti, who has retired.
"Chuck Margliotti served the city wonderfully," Cherepko said, "and I can't say enough about Jeff List. He's been a great leader in the fire department as well."
Jason Togyer is editor of Tube City Almanac and volunteer executive director of Tube City Community Media Inc. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Originally published April 05, 2019.