LODI, N.J. -- Lodi police officially received accreditation from the New Jersey State Chiefs of Police Association (NJSACOP) at Tuesday's night's Council meeting.
"It's a very positive acknowledgment for our agency and our community," Police Chief Vincent Quatrone told Daily Voice.
NJSACOP examined “all aspects of the Lodi Police Department's policies and procedures, management, operations, and support services,” during a headquarters visit, Quatrone said.
The group also solicited comments from the public and municipal employees.
Law enforcement agencies prize the designation for several reasons.
For one, it helps taxpayers by reducing risk and liability exposure and by providing a stronger defense against civil lawsuits.
It also demands greater accountability within an agency while publicly sending a message that it's committed to professionalism — the same as colleges and other institutions do.
The department must meet standards in more than 100 areas, including prisoner transfers, how petty cash is handled and the process for evidence chain-of-custody.
The review team, made up of law enforcement officers from similar agencies, “review written materials, interview agency members and visit offices and other places where compliance with the standards can be observed,” said Harry J. Delgado, the program manager.
They then report to the commission, which determines whether to grant accreditation.
Those who favor accreditation say it’s one thing to have guidelines but another to have them sanctioned by such a respected authority.
Accreditation is valid for a three-year period, during which the agency must submit annual reports.
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