Updated Sept. 17
The Edgartown Police department was awarded state accreditation from the Massachusetts Police Accreditation Commission Tuesday.
Accreditation is a self-initiated evaluation process by which police departments strive to meet and maintain standards that have been established for the profession and by the profession, according to a press release about the award. The standards reflect critical areas of police management, operations, and technical support activities. They cover policy development, emergency response planning, training, communications, property and evidence handling, use of force, vehicular pursuit, prisoner transport, and holding facilities.
Edgartown Police Chief Bruce McNamee told The Times the department now joins 73 other municipalities that are accredited.
“It’s a whole-agency effort,” McNamee said. “I want to thank all the officers of the Edgartown Police Department.”
McNamee also thanked the department’s administrative assistant, Maria Ventura, who was instrumental in getting the high honor. West Tisbury Police Chief Matthew Mincone and Detective Nikolaj Alfons Wojtkielo, and Oak Bluffs Police Lieutenant Timothy Williamson, also assisted the department in evaluation.
The commission offers two awards: certification and accreditation. The department was awarded certification in 2017.
Accreditation is the higher of the two, and is granted for a period of three years. Accreditation enhances the reputation of the agency, minimizes the agency’s exposure to liability, provides a basis to correct deficiencies before they become public problems, and many other benefits.
The entire process of certification began under former Edgartown Police Chief David Rossi’s tenure. Lieutenant Chris Dolby was the accreditation officer manager through the entire process.
“Without his continued hard work and dedication the department would never have enjoyed this professional distinction,” McNamee said of Dolby.
Updated to add history of accreditation process. — Ed.