Barnstable Police Sgt. Sean Sweeney retires after 40 years, calling it a “great ride”

Sgt. Sean Sweeney

-Barnstable Police Sgt. Sean Sweeney oversaw his final roll call last week and put the wraps on one of Cape Cod’s most successful law enforcement careers, retiring   from the force after 40 years of service.

He began his 4-decade career as a summer officer with the Barnstable Police Department in 1978, working Main Street, Hyannis.

On his final day, dozens of friends, family and current and former members of law enforcement joined him at roll call.

They included current Barnstable Chief Paul MacDonald and former Barnstable Police Chief Neil Nightingale, former Yarmouth Police Chief Peter Carnes and former Falmouth Police Chief David Cusolito.

MacDonald said Sweeney’s retirement was truly “the end of an era” and a sad day for the Barnstable Police Department.

“He epitomizes the value that every police officer must have – strength, firmness, his kindness, his compassion, his empathy,” said MacDonald.

The chief and Sweeney began their Barnstable careers at the same time, working the overnight shift patrolling Hyannis.

“His mere presence made this department a better place,” said MacDonald.

Sgt. Sean Sweeney in the early years

Centerville State Representative Will Crocker presented Sweeney with a proclamation from the House of Representatives in Boston signed by the legislative delegation and Governor Charlie Baker.

Sweeney was known for having the ability to connect with people he met on the beat, whether it was helping oversee security for the Kennedy Family, assisting people in need he encountered on patrol, or even saving injured wildlife.

“In the 40 years, I really hope I helped some people, hope I was there for them when they needed somebody. People certainly have been there for me,” Sweeney said

He famously saved several ducklings last year trapped in a storm drain by literally reaching into it to rescue the animals.

Sweeney relayed a story once told by former Barnstable Police Lt. Martin Hoxie that showed Sweeney’s ability to relate to whomever he was speaking. “As Lt. Hoxie said one time after I did a talk, ‘you know, I think you could put a hat on a fire hydrant and he could talk to it for a half-hour.'”

“There is nobody who is luckier than I am. I have great friends,” he said. Sweeney also thanked his wife, Jane, calling her the greatest thing that has ever happened to him.

“I think the Barnstable Police Department is absolutely wonderful. I think it’s one of the best places to work and I wouldn’t trade this for all the money in the world,” he said.

Sweeney worked for Falmouth briefly before returning to Barnstable as a full-time patrol officer in 1982.

He held numerous positions at the department from detective assigned to the Cape Cod Drug Task Force to Administrative Supervisor to Public Information Officer, and a multitude of official and unofficial roles in between.

Sweeney talked about his time in college when a professor once said there were people who would get up and go to work each day and hate it. And then there are going to be people for whom it’s not a job, it’s a career.

Sweeney said  for him, being a Barnstable police officer was a career that he enjoyed each day. He chose January 4th as his retirement day to coincide with his mom’s birthday.

Sweeney was promoted to sergeant in 1990, and rounded-out his tenure as a supervisor assigned to the Patrol Division on the day shift.

Sgt Sweeney’s never-faltering smile and positive attitude, as well as daily weather reports, will be sorely missed.

“It’s been a great ride, a great ride,” Sweeney said as he concluded his final roll call.

Congratulations Sergeant Sean Sweeney on a successful police career and retirement!

Media release and photos furnished by Barnstable Police
737 West Main Street
Hyannis, MA 02601
Contact Us | Advertise Terms of Use 
Employment and EEO | Privacy