Source:centraljerseynews.com — A former Edison police director was found dead in a Bergen County park Saturday morning in an apparent suicide, according to a statement from Hillsdale Police Chief Chip Stalter.
The statement said the body of Brian Collier, a Hillsdale resident, was found just before 10 a.m. Saturday in a “secluded, undeveloped section” of Wood Dale County Park in Hillsdale.
The statement said a preliminary investigation suggests that Collier, 53, took his own life. Police did not reveal how he died or if a note was left.
Police said that Collier had been missing since Friday and that a
missing person investigation was opened and searches were conducted throughout the day with no results.
With the help of other state and Bergen County police agencies, a more extensive search was launched on Saturday, the statement said.
Former Edison Mayor Jun Choi, who appointed Collier to the position of police director in early 2008, praised Collier for the work he did in Edison.
“It’s very tragic,” said Choi. “Brian was a cop’s cop with a big heart, a gem of a human being. He was a cop that every other cop looked up to.”
Edison Police Chief Thomas Bryan said Collier was a “very private”
person and was “”shocked” when he learned of Collier’s death.
“Working side-by-side with Brian was a very good experience,” Bryan said. “He was very committed and very dedicated to his work. He brought a lot of professionalism and resources to the police department.”
Collier began his career as a patrol officer for the Hillsdale Police Department in 1979. About five years later, he joined the Drug Enforcement Administration as a special agent. Stationed in Newark, he worked with local police in breaking up drug rings.
He later became a narcotics liaison and worked with international police
to curb the trafficking of illicit drugs.
Upon retiring from the Drug Enforcement Administration, he served as Edison’s police director until resigning at the end of last year.
Police said Collier’s death remains under investigation.