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Department Highlights

Old Police Photo

 1802 - Staunton Town Council drafted laws and ordinances for the police and good government of the town.  Two citizens expressly directed to suppress all disorderly conduct in slaves and others on the streets on Sundays and to receive $10.00 annually.

1805 - Constables of borough authorized to superintend police and good order of town patrol. 


1808 - Staunton Town Council adopted "regulations" for the government of town patrol. 


1812 - Contract watchmen authorized; every retailer of goods of foreign growth and manufacturer was taxed $3.00 per year to pay for watch. 


1832 - Ordinance required enrollment of male inhabitants over age of 18 years to perform watch duties.


1853 - Council established position of and elected as Chief of Police, Mangum W. Crawford, at $75.00 annual salary.

1860 - Mayor directed to order out night patrol.


1871 - $20.00 Issued each officer to purchase uniforms.


1926 - Traffic light system installed.


1928 - Police call boxes installed.


1932 - First motorcycle purchased.


1932 - First police school held.


1934 - First police car purchased.


1936 - Fingerprinting equipment purchased.


1938 - 2-way radio equipment installed (first in Valley).


1939 - First camera equipment purchased.


1940- Chief Webb serves as President of the Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police.


1953 - Radar purchased.


1960 - Reserve police instituted.


1963 - K-9 Corps instituted.


1963 – First African American officer hired.


1965 - 40 hour work week instituted.


1966 - First females employed.


 1967 - First Police Science classes attended at Blue Ridge Community College.


1968 - Police lock-up installed.


1968 - Purchased walkie-talkies.


1969 - Record Bureau installed.


1969 - Cadet system instituted.


1970 - Radio scrambler installed.


1970 - First Cushman cycle purchased.


1971 - First video replay T.V. used in the State.


1974 - New Record system.


1975 - Animal Control Officer hired.


1975 - First full-time female police officer hired.


1975 - Pistol Team organized.


1977 - Tactical Team formed.


1980 - Total reorganization of police department.


1981 - New 2-way communications system installed.


1982 - Patrol Officers started working permanent shifts.


1982 - Case Quality Control implemented


1983 - Intense Crime Prevention effort implemented city wide.


1984 - Replaced conventional baton with sidehandle baton.


 1985 - Staunton Police Department achieves initial accreditation. (Atlanta, Georgia)


1986 - Stun Guns Issued.


 1987 - D.A.R.E. Program in City School System.


1987 - Crime Stoppers Program started.


1987 - Business Watch started.


1988 - Officers issued individual portable radios.


1988 - Parking Enforcement Officers hired.


 1989 - PULSAR Program Implemented at Lee High School.


1989 - Human Relations Training provided to all officers.


1989 - Received Governor's Crime Prevention Award.


1990 - Received Governor's Crime Prevention Award.


1990 - E9-1-1/CAD Installed.


1990 - Police Department accredited for second time (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania).


1991 - Critical Incident Response Team, Hostage Negotiators operational.


1991 - Weapons changed to semi-automatic pistols.


1991 - Robot purchased for Crime Prevention Unit.


1991 - Multi-jurisdictional Drug Task Force formed (WASSP).


1991 - First department wide training retreat held.


1992 - Jeep seized in drug buy converted into DARE vehicle.


1992 - Reorganization of department - Criminal Investigations/Special Operations Division implemented.


1992 - Step van donated by Staunton Steam Laundry - converted to Critical Incident Response Unit.


1992 - Police Department re-located - moved into new City Hall building.


1992 - Staunton Police Issues Recommendations, Ideas, Team (SPIRIT) created to promote effective personal communications.


1993- 12 hour patrol work schedule implemented.


1993- Major upgrade of E-911 computer equipment.


1993- Department Policy Manual converted from paper to computer diskettes.


1993- Three officers receive Virginia Chiefs of Police Medal of Valor Award.


1993- Community Policing Program implemented department wide with the creation of COPE Teams.


1994- First session of Citizens Police Academy held.


1994- Two officers receive Virginia Chiefs of Police Valor Award.


1994- Staunton Police Community Advisory Board implemented.


1995- Police Department accredited for third time (Buffalo, NY.).


1995- O.C. spray issued to officers.


1995- Special Enforcement Team organized (Bike Patrol).


1995- Citizens Police Academy-2nd Session.


1995- Upgraded officers body armor.


1995- Planning started on joint firing range.


 1995- Fitness exams at Augusta Medical Center.


 1996- Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association formed.


1996- Weapons upgraded to Smith & Wesson .40 caliber Sigma.


1996- Reserve Police re-organization.


1996- Mobile/portable radio replacement.


1996- New decal design on patrol fleet.


1996- Two (2) satellite stations opened (GHP; Booker T. Washington Center).


1997- First Annual Volunteer Banquet.


1997- K-9 Team implemented.


1997- Assisted Augusta Co. Schools start PULSAR Program.


1997- Upgraded vehicle fleet with 4-wheel drive vehicles.


1997- Trained and equipped 2 rifle marksmen for Critical Incident Team.


1998- First Annual Law Enforcement Memorial Service.


1998- Police Department accredited for fourth time (Hershey, PA).


1998- E-911 telephone system upgraded.


1998- Back-up radio repeater upgraded.


1998- Communications lease agreement with CFW (mobile phones and pagers).


 1999- School Resource Officer assigned to R. E. Lee High School.


1999- First female officer promoted to the rank of Sergeant.


1999- School Resource Officer assigned to Shelburne Middle School.


1999- Hosted mid-year conference for the Mid East Region of the International Conference of Police Chaplains.


1999- Departments Senior Chaplain served as President of the Mid East Chapter of the ICPC.


2000- First Youth Police Academy session held.


2000- Police Department Web Site goes on-line.


2000- Chief selected as President of the Virginia Chief’s Association.


2000- Educational Incentive Program re-instated.


2000- Ground breaking for the new Police Academy.


2001- Motorcycle Officers implemented.


2001- Department accredited for fifth time (St. Louis, Missouri).


2001- Accreditation Commemorative Badge issued.


2001- RAID Response Plan instituted.


2001- Co-hosted Virginia Chief’s of Police Annual Conference.


2002- Implemented School Resource Officer program in City elementary schools.


2002- Animal Control Officer upgraded to sworn officer position.


2002- Department’s first female graduate of the FBI National Academy program.


2002- Department technology committee formed.


2002- Two children’s books involving Department personnel, Chase and Rescue, written by local author published by Random House.


2003- E-911 Center begins directly accepting cellular 911 calls.


2003- Major upgrade to radio equipment in E-911 Center.


2003- First female promoted to rank of Captain.


2003- Chief of Police G.L. “Butch” Wells retires June 30, after serving nearly seventeen years as Department’s police chief.


2003- Appointed first Public Information Officer.


2003- Department K-9 “Kally” retired; replaced by “Niko”.


2003- Officers equipped with “less-lethal” bean bag rounds.


2004- Department accredited for sixth time (Buffalo, New York).


2004- Department Records Management System (RMS) software upgraded.


2004- “Shop with a Cop” program started to benefit underprivileged youth during Christmas season.


2005- Officers equipped with “less-lethal” Tasers.


2005- Department Computer-Aided Dispatch (CAD) software upgraded.


2005- Weapons upgraded to Sig Sauer P226 .40 caliber pistols.


2005- First officer assigned to Regional Anti-Gang Task Force.


2006- New Critical Incident Response Team vehicle purchased through grant funding.


2006- Department’s E-911 Center furniture and telephone equipment upgraded.


2006- Newly created supervisory positions in E-911 Center are filled as four Dispatch Team Leaders were promoted.


2006- Police Department equipped with Live-Scan fingerprinting station that allows for electronic submission of fingerprints.


2006- New Staunton-Augusta-Waynesboro Regional Firing Range opens at new site in Jollivue.


2006- Opening of new Middle River Regional Jail facility in Verona.


2006- Department implements Livescan technology automated the process of fingerprinting.


2007- Department accredited for seventh time (Montreal, Canada).


2007- Department honored as CALEA “Flagship Agency” as model law enforcement agency.


2007- First bi-lingual officer hired.


2007- Department joins Augusta County Sheriff’s Office, Waynesboro Police department and the Virginia State Police to establish the WASSP regional drug and gang task force; two officers assigned full-time to the task force.


2007- E-911 Center becomes Phase II complaint for wireless telephone calls.


2008- Department hosted mid-year conference of Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police at Stonewall Jackson Hotel.


2008- Arrest made in High’s Ice Cream Store double murder that was perpetrated on April 11, 1967.


2009- Began mobile field reporting of offense/incident reports.


2009- Implemented new Crisis Intervention (CIT) teams to increase effective handling of cases involving mentally ill subjects.


2009- Completed implementation of the COMLINC system which allows the police department to communicate with other law enforcement agencies across the state through Voice over Internet protocol (VOIP) technology.


2010- Department accredited for eighth time (Las Vegas, NV).


2010– New Verizon Viper telephone system installed in E-911 Center.


2010– Held the first ever Tom Larner Memorial 5K fundraiser.


2011– Changed marked police units to black and white with new logo.


2011– Started Department Facebook ® page.


2011– Migrated to mobile field reporting of offense reports.


2011– Instituted bar coding system of all evidence and property.


2012 - Chief Jim Williams elected as President of the Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police.


2012 – Police Department’s radio system converted to meet FCC’s narrow banding requirement.


2012 – Crime analysis plus software installed.


2012 – Police Department tactical robot purchased through grant funds.


2014 - E-911 center receives Virginia Office of EMS, Emergency Medical Dispatch Accreditation.


2015 – IT System Engineer I  hired to manage department’s technology.


2015 – Blue Ridge Crisis Intervention Team Transfer of Custody agreement expanded to include Middle River Regional Jail and the implementation of a  law enforcement staffed assessment site at Augusta Health.


2015 – Officers equipped with body worn cameras. 


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Emergency 911
Dispatch 332-3842
Administration 332-3845
Records 332-3856
Investigations 332-3849
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