Frank Balles, Republican candidate for Atlantic County Sheriff, today called on his opponent, Sheriff Jim McGettigan, to apologize for allegations he made last week that Balles, a captain in the Pleasantville Police Department, had acted improperly when he held a news conference to receive the endorsement of the New Jersey Organization for Latino Law Enforcement.
?I said at the time that McGettigan?s claims were bogus and that it was his typical campaign tactic to throw false accusations around to cover his 15-year record of failure in office,? Balles said.
Responding to a letter from McGettigan that claimed Balles was on duty and used a police vehicle to arrive at the news conference, Pleasantville Mayor Ralph Peterson said Balles acted appropriately and that all allegations against him are unfounded.
The Mayor added that ?all officers in the Pleasantville Department, including Capt. Balles, are highly qualified, trained and positively motivated professionals, capable of meeting contemporary law enforcement standards and performance.?
Balles was off duty at the time the Latino officers endorsed his candidacy at a news conference in Mays Landing on Sept. 19.
?McGettigan has embarrassed himself yet again by engaging in mud slinging,? Balles said. ?He has revealed himself as someone clearly afraid to discuss genuine issues of concern, like the 10,000 unserved felony warrants, his two years? worth of abuse of the taxpayer supported gasoline credit card, his failure to create a narcotics team or K-9 unit, and his elimination of supplemental officers? patrols to assist local police departments.?
?I doubt that an apology will be forthcoming from him,? Balles said, ?just as I doubt he will step up to address his record in office.?
Balles, a 23-year veteran of the Pleasantville Department, has pledged to administer a sheriff?s Department that is far more aggressive in all areas of law enforcement.