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Seeking Re-Accreditation, Ridgewood Police Look to Public Input

As part of the process to be accredited as a 'flagship agency,' the RPD will hold a public hearing on Monday, Dec. 17 at 7 p.m. at Village Hall.

The following press release was sent by the Ridgewood Police Department.

The Ridgewood Police Department will be seeking reaccreditation this  winter with the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA®).  
The Accreditation process involves several different components, which will come to a head this December with an “on-site” assessment of the Department’s Policies and Procedures to assure that they meet standards and regulations which are set forth by the CALEA Organization.

During the “on-site” the assessors will review the policies of the Ridgewood Police Department and will observe the actual practice of agency personnel to assure that the policies are followed while our officers are out in the field. In total, the Ridgewood Police Department must meet and practice upwards of 400 individual standards both on the state and national levels.

The Ridgewood Police Department became accredited from CALEA in 1996 and is the oldest agency to maintain continuous accreditation in the State of New Jersey. The Ridgewood Police Department entered this program to demonstrate its commitment to providing quality service to our community. Our last assessment, in 2010, resulted in the Ridgewood Police Department being honorably classified as a ‘Flagship Agency’. The prestigious ‘Flagship’ distinction classifies the Ridgewood Police Department as being among the top Law Enforcement Agencies internationally during that assessment period.

In December, a team of assessors from various parts of the country will be arriving to begin the review for the fifth reaccreditation, or sixth inspection, of the department to validate that Ridgewood is still in compliance with the applicable standards in order to receive reaccreditation.

The Ridgewood Police Department is proud of our accomplishments and it has, in past “onsites,” been noted that “the Officers and staff demonstrated a dedication to providing professional law enforcement services to an affluent community that expects nothing less. It was apparent throughout the assessment that the agency is living up to the standards of accreditation as a means of maintaining professionalism.”  

It was also said that “[The Ridgewood Police Department’s] dedication to the community was evident by interactions witnessed between the officers and the public as well as with civic and community groups.”

The Ridgewood Police Department would like to maintain this positive interaction with our community and are dedicated to assuring that we receive these same comments from our future ‘on-site’ assessors. To help assure this positive interaction between the Ridgewood Police Department and our community, we would like to remain open to any questions you may have about the accreditation process, and encourage residents to contact us with any concerns or questions you may have.  

As part of the on-site assessment, agency employees and members of the community are invited to offer public comments to the Assessment Team members during two events on Monday, December 17, 2012. The first is a public call in session where the Assessment Team embers will be accepting telephone calls to (201) 615-6977 between the hours of 1:00pm and 3:00pm. The second is a public hearing to be held in the Municipal Court Room (131 North Maple Avenue, Ridgewood NJ) at 7:00pm. Telephone comments, as well as appearances at the public information session, are limited to 10 minutes and must address the agency’s ability to comply with CALEA’s standards.  

A copy of the standards is available at the Ridgewood Police Department, 131 N. Maple Avenue, Ridgewood, NJ. The local contacts are Captain Jacqueline Luthcke, Ptl. Jeffrey Casson or Ptl. Joseph Youngberg at (201) 670-4534. Anyone wishing to submit written comments about the Ridgewood Police Department’s ability to comply with the standards for accreditation may send them to the CALEA, 13575 Heathcote Boulevard, Suite 320, Gainesville, Virginia 20155.

The assessment team is composed of law enforcement practitioners from similar, but out-ofstate agencies. The assessors will review written materials; interview individuals; visit offices and other places where compliance can be witnessed.  

The assessors are: Team Leader Chief Thomas E. Bennett, Suffolk (Va) Police Department and Team Member Captain Sean Kelly, Durham (NH) Police Department. Once the Commission’s assessors complete their review of the agency, the assessors report back to the full Commission, which will then decide if the agency is to be granted accredited status. As always, we are proud to serve the fine community of Ridgewood as we have since 1894. And we look forward to continuing our service to you through professionalism and pride in the future.

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