Jackson police preparing for reaccreditation

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Jackson Police Department is preparing for a thorough evaluation.

On Saturday, the department will welcome two assessors from the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, who'll review department policies, its operation as a whole and also ride along with some of the city's officers. The end result: a reaccreditation nearly three years in the making.

The Jackson Police Department received their initial accreditation in March 2008, adhering to more than 400 standards that involve organization and management, law enforcement operations, traffic enforcement, prisoner and court related services, technical services and relationships with other agencies.

Other than the Missouri State Highway Patrol Troop E in Poplar Bluff, Mo., Jackson is the only agency in Southeast Missouri to have sought and been awarded the accreditation.

Jackson chief of police James Humphreys said seeking accreditation through CALEA is voluntary and is the most prestigious recognition of excellence in the profession.

"Those are national standards and they're the best available," he said. "It's a tough commitment ... and we're going to continue to do it here."

Lt. Chris Mouser, accreditation manager for the department, said the CALEA team will be on site until Tuesday reviewing department files, reports and making general observations about day-to-day procedures. They'll also interview staff and interact with the Jackson community to get an accurate picture of how well the department is doing its job and if it is meeting all applicable standards.

"The paperwork, effort and time it takes to do it for an agency our size, it's a difficult process to go through," Mouser said. "But, at the same time it's a challenge we wanted to take and we're proud to have the accreditation."

As part of the on-site accreditation, the public is asked to participate in a public information session set for 5 p.m. Monday at Jackson City Hall. In the council chambers, the CALEA assessors will hear input from residents on the department's ability comply with the commission's standards.

The public can also call in to speak with a member of the CALEA team Sunday, when they can express a similar concerns or compliments.

"The public is who we serve. We're here for them and if we're not doing the best job that we can do to serve them we need to know," Mouser said. "Hopefully, with some of their feedback -- good or bad --it'll give us an idea of what direction we need to go."

Comments via telephone or at the public information session will be limited to 10 minutes. To leave a comment over the telephone, residents should call 243-2411 between 1 and 3 p.m.

ehevern@semissourian.com

388-3635

Pertinent Address:

525 S. Hope St., Jackson, MO

101 Court St., Jackson, MO

Map of pertinent addresses

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