MORRIS COUNTY — Robert J. Carroll, appointed in October by Governor Phil Murphy to serve as acting prosecutor in Morris County, was formally sworn into the job on July 9 during a Morristown ceremony after his nomination to the post was cleared last week by the state Senate Judiciary Committee.
Carroll was sworn in by Superior Court Assignment Judge Stuart A. Minkowitz of the Morris and Sussex vicinage, while the prosecutor’s wife, Roseann, and daughter, Kimberly, held the bible in the public meeting room of the Morris County Board of County Commissioners.
“The question that I have been asked by most of my contemporaries is, why did I want to return to criminal justice, yet again, to which I repeated the same answer,” Carroll told the crowd of family, friends, and colleagues who attended. “I was simply not comfortable watching from the sidelines the growing divide between communities and law enforcement — and with the huge added challenge of COVID, which strained and exhausted so many, I believed that with my experience and judgment earned in over four decades of legal practice, as well as law enforcement, I could and should offer to help.”
Among those in attendance were Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal and New Jersey’s leading Assistant Attorney General, Andrew Bruck, who will take over as acting attorney general when Grewal assumes a new federal post next week as head of security for the Securities and Exchange Commission.
“This is a great day, not just for this office and not just for the residents of this county, but for the residents of this state as well. Because this is a prosecutor who gets it. He understands what this job is about. He understands that it’s about more than numbers. It’s about delivering justice and it’s about standing up for all of the residents of this county and the state,” said Grewal.
Also in attendance were Morris County Commissioner Director Stephen H. Shaw, Commissioner Tayfun Selen, state Senators Anthony Bucco and Richard Codey, Assemblywoman Aura Dunn, Morris County Sheriff James Gannon, Surrogate Heather Darling, former Morris County Prosecutor Frederic Knapp, County Administrator John Bonanni, New Jersey Turnpike Executive Director John Keller and Carroll’s long-time law partner, Guy Michael. Staff from the prosecutor’s office, county offices, and court staff also attended.
Carroll has extensive law enforcement experience.
Starting as an Essex County Investigator in the early 1970s, Carroll becomes an Assistant Prosecutor. He initially worked in the Trial and Appellate sections, and later served as Assistant Prosecutor/Supervisor of Organized Crime and Special Prosecutions section in that agency.
In 1980, he was selected to become a state Deputy Attorney General in the elite Special Prosecutions Section of the New Jersey Division of Criminal Justice, a unit he later headed. Carroll was subsequently appointed in 1986 to Supervising Deputy Attorney General, Organized Crime and Racketeering Task Force (OCRTF) at the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General.
He was later promoted to Chief/Assistant Attorney General of the task force in 1989, when he investigated and prosecuted major New Jersey criminal enterprises and public corruption, including organized crime members, associates, and their criminal “crews.” Carroll’s cases included the infamous “Iceman” killer, Richard Kuklinski, who was convicted of several brutal murders that have been the subject of many news and history programs.
Carroll also led investigations into five La Cosa Nostra crime families and personally prosecuted the hierarchy of the New Jersey Lucchese Crime Family, achieving a major RICO-murder conviction.
Carroll has acted as an instructor for a number of law enforcement institutions, including the New Jersey State Police Academy and Essex County Police Academy, and has educated hundreds of state and tribal leaders in law enforcement and anti-corruption methods.
Before becoming Acting Morris County Prosecutor, Carroll served as Director of the Law Department for the New Jersey Turnpike Authority, the largest toll road authority in North America. He also had served as Acting Sussex County Prosecutor and had supervised thousands of background investigations while serving as a Chairman of a Gaming Commission and Compliance Officer for major Native American Gaming Facilities.
Carroll earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Wake Forest University, where he was a scholarship football player. He holds a J.D. from the Seton Hall University School of Law. He also holds an Executive Certificate for Leadership Development from Rutgers University School of Management and Labor Relations.
Carroll also has been recognized and received commendations from numerous federal and New Jersey state law enforcement agencies, such as the FBI, ATF, Secret Service, Federal Organized Crime Strike Force, US Marshalls, US Attorney’s Office, NJ State Police, NJ DCJ, and numerous Prosecutor’s Offices for his leadership work on organized crime and effective inter-agency team building.