Canton’s newest police officer Adam Gompper comes to the job with both a family legacy in law enforcement and a love for his community.
Gompper has been on the job for a few days now after graduating from the Police Standards and Training Council, commonly known as the police “academy.”
Being an officer fulfills a dream Gompper has had since he was a kid.
“It’s something I’ve always wanted to do,” he said.
Gompper’s grandfather John was long-time member of the East Hartford Police Department, serving several years as assistant chief.
His father William is a retired forensic specialist for Whiting Forensic Division, part of Connecticut Valley Hospital in Middletown.
For the past 10 years, the 30-year young Gompper has been a police dispatcher, working four years for UConn Health Center Police in Farmington and six in Bloomfield.
He had previously attempted to pass the physical exam required of officers but had trouble with the running portion.
Last year, however, he decided to go for it again and worked hard to get in top physical shape, passed the test and a position opened in Canton.
“It kind of worked out,” he said.
Gompper loved dispatching but feels this is closer to his long-time goal.
“I wanted to be involved more than being a voice on the other side of the radio,” he said.
The 30-year-old Gompper grew up in Manchester but moved here five years ago. His wife Diana Benne grew up in Torrington and owns Head Over Heels Hair Studio on Route 44.
“We fell in love with the town,” he said.
He said the couple loves the town’s atmosphere, numerous special events and the people. That’s only been reinforced in his first few days on the job, meeting many local business owners.
“It’s an awesome community,” he said.
Gompper will participate in a field training program for Canton, shadowing a veteran officer and gradually accepting more responsibility.
Police Chief Christopher Arciero said Gompper brings the department up to full staff and is a great addition.
He feels the dispatching provides a lot of good background and likes his community involvement.
“That will provide useful as a police officer,” Arciero said. “He has really deep connections in the community.”