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NYPD gets first Indian-American captain
George Joseph in New York
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July 19, 2007 15:21 IST

Lieutenant Stanley George was promoted to captain in the New York Police Department, making him the first first-generation Indian American to reach that rank in a major police department in the United States.

It is the highest rank an individual can achieve in the police through examinations and is equal to a chief superintendent in Britain.

"It is definitely an honor. I feel happy to reach this level," said George, who was one of the first Indian-Americans to become a police officer in the city.

He began his career in the NYPD as a civilian accountant in 1989.

In 1992, he joined the police force after graduating from the Police Academy. Through a series of tests he began climbing the ladder, becoming a detective in 1996, sergeant in 2000, lieutenant in 2003, and captain this year.

George has worked in various units, including patrol services, administrative services, criminal justice bureau and in the counterterrorism bureau.

He has been working at 1 Police Plaza, the Department headquarters, for several years and was the commanding officer of the police equipment section. The day before the WTC attacks he moved to Criminal Justice Bureau, which conducts research and planning. On 9/11, his unit was assigned to the building adjacent to the WTC where he had to work for 20 hours without rest, extricating corpses from the debris. For the next few weeks, he worked at the Command and Control Center. Nassau County honored him for his contributions.

After promotion, his immediate posting could be to manage a police station. There are other offers also, he said.

Jag Jaskaran, a Guyanese Indian, is the only other person of Indian origin to become a captain in the NYPD.

Considering that there are around 300,000 Indians in New York, the number of Indians in the police force is neither adequate nor representative of Indians in the population, Jaskaran said.

George said he only tried to help people as a police officer, not show off or harass anyone. As an immigrant, he said he treated everyone with compassion. He said more Indians should join the department; otherwise the community would not integrate into the mainstream. He said he had faced no racial discrimination, and that the police are a disciplined force.

Recently, the people of South Asian origin in the NYPD formed the NYPD Desi Society, a fraternal organisation approved by Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly. It was the first South Asian police officers' organization in the US. The last fraternal society was formed a quarter of a century ago. The NYPD, the largest such department in the world with more than 37,038 officers, has about 500 officers of South Asian descent. Another 500 work as civilians in the Department.

George has also been president of the Pentecostal Youth Fellowship of America, the secretary of Pentecostal Conference, youth coordinator of the Pentecostal Conference and the secretary of Assemblies of God India Fellowship of North America.

A native of Kerala [Images], he is the son of the late Pastor V S George and Rebecamma. He is married to Beena and the couple has two children, Kevin and Kristen.

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