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The Huntsville Police Department (HPD) has retained “Recognized Status” for compliance with the Texas Law Enforcement Agency Best Practices Recognition Program.
HPD earned the initial certification on November 13, 2013, after a two-year effort to meet the intensive standards. HPD completed their four-year review recently, according to Police Chief Kevin Lunsford and Lt. Curt Landrum.
Chief Lunsford said HPD became only the 82nd agency in the State to be so recognized.
“To date, there are approximately 140 Recognized agencies in Texas with another 38 currently in the process. To put that in perspective, there are approximately 2500 law enforcement agencies in Texas,” said Chief Lunsford.
Landrum said to retain the Recognized status, HPD went through an intense onsite inspection. That inspection included numerous interviews with staff and review of policies following the best practices set forth by the Texas Police Chiefs Association.
Landrum explained that there are over 160 proofs that the inspection covers, from being a 24-hour agency to specific trainings for officers. Two inspectors came to Huntsville for several days. The inspectors are current and retired police chiefs across Texas. Each one is a volunteer, who gets no compensation for their efforts.
“The program greatly assists us in policy development that meets best practices in Texas law enforcement keeping us consistent with other agencies in the state,” Landrum said. “As a result, we have well trained officers.”
Lunsford stated the department has carefully reviewed use of force, protection of citizen rights, vehicle pursuits, property and evidence management, patrol and investigative operations, and more. It also looks at the facility, generators, and the evidence room. This voluntary process requires the Police Department to conduct a critical self-review of the agency’s policies, procedures, facilities and operations.
Landrum said the Recognition Program has a direct correlation to the high level of service expected by our community. The continued effort to meet these best practices involves teamwork from all police personnel, whether sworn officers or civilians. There is a prestige with being recognized for our level of professionalism.
The Law Enforcement Recognition Program is a voluntary process that allows police agencies in Texas prove their compliance with 164 Texas Law Enforcement Best Practices. These best practices were carefully developed by Texas Law Enforcement professionals to assist agencies in the efficient and effective delivery of service, the reduction of risk, and the protection of individuals rights.
“During those two days, I had the utmost confidence that the evaluators would observe what the public sees everyday - us doing our jobs and representing our community with honor, professionalism, and dedication,” said Chief Lunsford.
HPD will be honored for retaining their status at the annual March convention of the Texas Police Chiefs Association.
For more information, contact Lt. Landrum at firstname.lastname@example.org.