Promotion day for three Manchester Police Officers

Promotions are awarded based on meritorious service to the police department.

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From left, Sgt. Patrick Houghton, Lt. Allen Aldenberg, and Capt. Sean Leighton. Jeffrey Hastings/Frame of Mind Photos

MANCHESTER, NH – Three Manchester Police officers were promoted Monday during a brief swearing-in ceremony at the Radisson Hotel. Gov. Chris Sununu attended the ceremony, along with families and fellow police officers. Below are detailed professional biographies of each of the officers, who all have extensive law enforcement experience, and have earned their promotions through exceptional service to MPD, as detailed here.


Capt. Sean M. Leighton

Capt. Leighton has been a member of the Manchester Police Department for 19 years. During his tenure he has served as a patrol officer, a field training officer, and as a detective. He was promoted to Sergeant in 2008 and has had supervisory assignments in the Patrol and Investigative Divisions. Following his promotion to Lieutenant in January 2015, he was assigned as supervisor of both the Juvenile and Domestic Violence Units. Since July 2015, he has served as a supervisor within the Special Enforcement Division. With his promotion to Captain, he will be assigned to the Patrol Division.

While assigned as the Juvenile/Domestic Violence Units supervisor, Capt. Leighton recognized the need for child victims and witnesses of violent crime to receive services that would address any related trauma. To that end, he devised and implemented a child advocate position at the Police Department. Since its inception, the child advocacy program has grown and now serves as a model that other agencies have sought to emulate.

Capt. Leighton has served on a number of boards and committees including the Greater Manchester Domestic Violence Council, the Governor’s Summit on Substance Abuse Planning Committee, and the Hillsborough County North Drug Court Team. Capt. Leighton was the recipient of the MPD Chief’s Achievement Medal in 2007, recognizing his contribution to the investigation of the murder of Officer Michael Briggs. In 2008, he received a commendation for his work as a key member of an investigative team that worked on a challenging 13-month homicide investigation, ultimately bringing about the arrest of the perpetrator. With regard to this same case, Capt. Leighton also received the John “Sonny” Carbone Memorial Award from the New England Narcotic Enforcement Officers Association. In 2014, Capt. Leighton was also commended for his investigative contribution to a burglary initiative implemented in the fall of 2013, which culminated in the arrest of numerous individuals and the recovery of thousands of dollars-worth of stolen property.

He earned an associate’s degree in Criminal Justice from NH Technical College in 1994, and went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice Administration from the University of Massachusetts–Lowell, in 1998. During his career with the department, he has also earned a number of specialized training certifications. Capt. Leighton and his wife, Martha, have two children, Colin and Ryan.

Chief Nick Willard, second from right, flanked by, from left, Lt. Allen Aldenberg, Sgt. Patrick Houghton, and Capt. Sean Leighton, following their May 1 promotion ceremony. Jeffrey Hastings/Frame of Mind Photo

Lt. Allen D. Aldenberg

Lt. Allen Aldenberg has served as a law-enforcement professional for 23 years, serving with the Essex County Sheriff’s Department in Massachusetts, and the Goffstown Police Department prior to joining the Manchester Police Department in 2003. During his tenure with MPD, Lt. Aldenberg has served as a Patrol officer, Field Training Officer, K9 Officer, investigator within the Detective Unit and as the sex offender registry officer within the Sexual Offender Compliance Unit.

Following his promotion to Sergeant in 2013, he was assigned as a Patrol Supervisor and since 2015, has served as the director of the Training Unit. Lt. Aldenberg also serves as a member of the department’s honor guard. He has been a member of the SWAT Team since 2011, and during his time on the team has served as the team leader of the Crisis Negotiations Team. He was awarded the department’s Life Saving Medal in 2011 for his efforts in preventing a suicidal subject from jumping from the ledge of a parking garage. He engaged the woman in conversation for two hours before taking action to physically pull her from the ledge to safety. In 2016 he was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal for negotiating the surrender of an armed man.

Lt. Aldenberg was named Officer of the Month for December 2010 and May 2012. Lt. Aldenberg has served with the Massachusetts Army National Guard for 25 years. He currently holds the rank of Lieutenant Colonel and is currently assigned to Joint Force Headquarters as the Director of Human Resources. Since 9/11, he has been deployed to Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, and Iraq in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. For his service in Iraq, from 2009 – 2010, Lt. Aldenberg was awarded the Bronze Star medal.

Lt. Aldenberg holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminal Justice and a Master’s degree in Justice Administration, both of which were conferred by Norwich University, the Military College of Vermont. In July of 2017, he will graduate from the United States Army War College, with a Master’s of Strategic Studies degree. Lt. Aldenberg and his wife, Emily, have two children, Hunter and Kendal.

Sgt. Patrick M. Houghton

Sgt. Houghton has served with the Manchester Police Department for 14 years, but has been a part of the greater MPD family since birth. His mother, Christine, served the department for over 24 years as a records clerk and crime analyst, and his father, James, served the police department for more than 22 years, retiring at the rank of Sergeant. From 2003 to 2008, Sgt. Houghton served as a patrol officer, and field training officer. Since 2008, he has served as a detective within the Investigative Division assigned to the Violent Crimes Unit. In 2016, Sgt. Houghton was selected to become a member of the MPD SWAT Crisis Negotiator Team. Sgt. Houghton has shared his expertise as a detective by participating as a guest lecturer for local colleges and high schools and for the local Boy Scouts. And, for the past several years has conducted a Detectives 101 orientation course for newly assigned MPD detectives.

Sgt. Houghton received a certificate of recognition in 2008, recognizing his actions leading to the arrest of a burglary suspect. In 2012, he was awarded the department’s Meritorious Service Medal in recognition of his actions in pursuing the armed suspect who had shot and wounded Officer Dan Doherty. In 2014, he received a certificate of recognition for his efforts as a participant in a collaborative MPD burglary initiative which led to the arrest of suspects and the recovery of thousands of dollars-worth of stolen items. Sgt. Houghton was named Officer of the Month for April 2012, July 2014 and June 2015, and was selected as Officer of the Year for 2015. In 2015, he was also awarded the Chief’s Achievement Medal in recognition of his work ethic and tenacity as an investigator. Also in 2015, the U.S. Marshals Service awarded him a certificate of recognition in appreciation of his efforts in the location and apprehension of a 15 Most Wanted fugitive, murder suspect Matthew Dion.

Sgt. Houghton is a graduate of Trinity High School in Manchester and studied toward a degree in criminal justice at the NH Technical Institute in Concord, NH. During his career with the department, he has also earned a number of specialized training certifications. Sgt. Houghton and his wife, Kristen, have a five-year-old daughter, Margaret.

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Manchester NH Police Department

This press release was issued by Manchester, NH, Police Department.