Appointed by Attorney General Gurbir Grewal to serve as the Acting Union County Prosecutor, Lyndsay V. Ruotolo was sworn in to office on July 18, 2019. Prosecutor Ruotolo and her team work to constantly improve the services provided by the Prosecutor’s Office in making Union County safer and more just for the residents they serve. Under her leadership the Prosecutor’s Office has underwent significant changes intended to address key initiatives of her administration.
- Prosecutor Ruotolo established a Major Crimes Division encompassing two new investigative units (the Intelligence-Driven Prosecution Unit and the Opioid Task Force) created to reduce gun violence and better address the opioid epidemic, as well as an expanded Counter-Terrorism Unit, and the Cybercrime Task Force. The Major Crimes Division was created with the aim to strengthen collaboration between UCPO and local municipalities, and modernize investigative techniques utilized by the Office.
- In her commitment to improving police training and officer safety, strengthening community trust in law enforcement, and increasing community engagement, Prosecutor Ruotolo expanded the Office’s leadership team through the addition of a Community Engagement Team, as well as the creation of the position of Director of County-wide Police Policy, Planning, and Training. Over the past year, through the efforts of her expanded executive team, UCPO has implemented several new initiatives such as: the Body Worn Camera Performance Review Pilot Program; the Missing Persons Initiative; the launch of Union County CARES; the creation of a UCPO Hiring Committee, and Diversity & Inclusion Subcommittee; the Office’s first publicly available, formal Giglio Policy; and the issuance of S.O.P. 2020-002 intended to improve transparency in policing.
- In response to the realities of modern crime trends, Prosecutor Ruotolo also instituted the Office’s first formal county-wide mass-casualty protocol and notification system to marshal resources and improve law enforcement’s response to potential mass-casualty incidents.
- Prosecutor Ruotolo also reorganized the structure of the Office to increase efficiency so that more staffing and resources could be devoted to cases involving serious violent crimes.
Before her appointment, Prosecutor Ruotolo served as an Assistant United States Attorney in the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey, where she worked in the area of violent crime prosecution. Before joining the USAO, Ruotolo was an Assistant Prosecutor and Special Deputy Attorney General in the Union County Prosecutor’s Office for nearly five years. During her previous tenure with the Office, Ruotolo was assigned to the Guns, Gangs, Drugs, and Violent Crimes Task Force. As a line assistant prosecutor with UCPO, Ruotolo also worked closely with the Office of the Attorney General in spearheading Union County’s first Operation Helping Hand, a coordinated effort by law enforcement and community stakeholders to provide addiction intervention for those struggling with substance abuse. Building on the partnership she formed with Prevention Links during Union County’s initial Operation Helping Hand, through her current position, Prosecutor Ruotolo expanded the program from a week-long operation to the State’s first 24/7/365 model.
Prior to becoming a criminal prosecutor and certified criminal trial attorney, Prosecutor Ruotolo worked in the area of commercial litigation at the law firm of McElroy, Deutsch, Mulvaney & Carpenter, LLP. Prosecutor Ruotolo clerked for the Honorable Ellen L. Koblitz, in her capacity as the Presiding Judge of General Equity (Bergen County), and then also as Judge of the Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division. Prosecutor Ruotolo received her B.F.A., with honors, from the Tisch School for the Arts at New York University, and received her J.D., cum laude, from New York Law School where she served as Executive Editor of the Law Review.