The Southampton Town Police Department was honored by the New York State Law Enforcement Accreditation Program last week for achieving the administrative, training and operation standards outlined by the organization, earning the department accreditation through 2018.
The voluntary program evaluates participating agencies on 133 criteria and awards accreditation to qualifying agencies every five years. This is the fourth consecutive time that the Town Police has been honored by the Department of Criminal Justice Services, which administers the accreditation program, the first coming in 1998.
Being accredited means the department is functioning at or above the desired level of operation as outlined by the state’s accreditation council, Town Police Lieutenant Lawrence Schurek explained in an email.
Lt. Schurek, the department’s accreditation program manager, and Police Chief Robert Pearce attended the State Law Enforcement Accreditation Council Quarterly Meeting on September 12, held at the Alfred E. Smith State Office Building in Albany, to receive plaques commemorating the reaccreditation.
“I am extremely proud of the men and women of the Southampton Town Police Department in achieving the reaccreditation,” Chief Pearce wrote in an email. “Having an independent confirmation from the New York State Department of Criminal Justice that our department’s policies and procedures comply with the 133 professional standards set by the accreditation council recognizes the efforts of all our members who serve our community.”
Before receiving reaccreditation, the department’s administrative, training and operations policies and practices were evaluated by assessors from July 30 to August 1, Lt. Schurek noted. The criteria evaluated included handling of patrol, traffic, criminal investigations and unusual occurrences, and administrative standards that cover everything from the agency’s mission to the delineation of responsibility to the delegation of authority, he added.
Of the 133 criteria, Lt. Schurek said some of the “critical” points include officer responsibility and authority, accountability of supervisory personnel, safeguarding cash and agency weapons, storage of evidence, inventory control, internal affairs, vehicle pursuits, domestic incidences and disaster plans.