‘I Think It’s Time’: New Canaan Police Lt. Fred Pickering To Retire after 28 Years


Fred Pickering was six months out of New Canaan High School (class of ’86) when he joined the New Canaan Police Department. His father had been fire chief in New Canaan, and most of his family had been firemen, but a well-known local man named Jack Van Deusen—a former fire chief in New Canaan himself and a Wilton cop—advised Pickering to join the force. “He encouraged me to apply and next thing I know, I’m a police officer,” Pickering said on a recent afternoon. Now, nearly three decades later, Pickering—a town resident, local dad and Grace Community Church member who has been deeply involved in youth baseball here—is getting ready to retire from a career that he descried as “beyond what I could have imagined.”

“I enjoy helping people,” he said. “It’s something I have done.

‘I Feel Very Fortunate’: Police Lt. Fred Pickering Recalls Harrowing Motor Vehicle Stop

The lifelong New Canaan resident and career police officer who was dragged 35 feet during a motor vehicle stop on Route 106 said he’s home recovering, will start physical therapy Wednesday and hopes to be back at work in two weeks. Lt. Fred Pickering became entangled in the seat belt of a 2004 VW Jetta on Thursday night after a motorist said to be distressed stepped on the accelerator as police tried to remove him from the car where it was stopped north of Weed Street. The car crashed into a snow bank and Pickering told NewCanaanite.com that he sustained bruises on his knees, a strained shoulder and strained muscles in his back. “It probably took 20 seconds but it seemed like 20 minutes, to be honest with you,” the 1986 New Canaan High School graduate said. “I couldn’t get loose and I was just literally bouncing down the road and my first thought was just to get the guy away from the car, because I thought he was going to get run over at first, because he got hung up as he was coming out of the car.