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Hero Down: Suffolk County Police Det. Sgt. James Stapleton Succumbs To Cancer

Hauppauge, NY – Suffolk County Police Department (SCPD) Detective Sergeant James Stapleton died of cancer on Oct. 2.

The SCPD announced the 49-year-old detective sergeant’s death in a press release on Monday.

“James was a fantastic human being and one of the finest officers and detectives I have had the honor of meeting in my 34-years as a police officer,” SCPD Fourth Precinct Inspector Michael Romagnoli said in the release. “His loss will be felt not only as a colleague, but as a friend.”

Det. Sgt. Stapleton entered the law enforcement academy in October of 1995.

He went on to serve as a uniformed patrol officer in the SCPD’s Fifth and Sixth Precincts.

In May of 2006, he was promoted to the rank of detective, following by a promotion to the rank of sergeant in September of 2019.

He was most recently assigned to the Identification Section, where he was promoted to the rank of detective sergeant.

“You would be hard pressed to find one person without a kind word to say about him,” SCPD Fourth Squad Detective Sergeant Keith Serper said. “He touched a lot of lives.”

Det. Sgt. Serper said Det. Sgt. Stapleton treated everyone with respect and went out of his way to help others.

“Detective Sergeant James Stapleton truly exemplified what it means to be a member of the Suffolk County Police Department through his work ethic, dedication to duty, and character,” Acting Suffolk County Police Commissioner Stuart Cameron said. “The Suffolk County Police family has suffered a tremendous loss with his passing and our thoughts are with his family and friends at this time.”

Det. Sgt. Stapleton was awarded three departmental recognitions and 10 command recognitions for his distinguished police work during his 26-year SCPD career.

Suffolk County Police Superior Officers Association spokesperson Robert Viscuso said Det. Sgt. Stapleton continued to focus on helping others, even as he fought for his life.

“Jimmy battled an utterly evil disease with admirable courage,” Viscuso said in the press release.

Det. Sgt. Stapleton leaves behind his children, according to the department.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Suffolk County Police Department Detective Sergeant James Stapleton, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.

Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.

Written by
Holly Matkin

Holly is a former probation and parole officer who is married to a sheriff’s deputy. She is a regular contributor to Signature Montana magazine, and has written feature articles for Distinctly Montana magazine.

View all articles
Written by Holly Matkin


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