The permanent Smithfield Police Department was established in 1950. It has progressed from its meager beginning with three full-time officers and one patrol car to its present complement of 41 sworn police officers, 19 civilian employees and modernized fleet of vehicles. The Department now operates with administrative, uniform, detective, record and computer divisions in its organizational format. The Department is one of the most respected law enforcement agencies in the state, and is headquartered in a two-level building on four acres overlooking the Stillwater Reservoir. It houses a three-cell, lock-up facility and a full-service, police maintenance garage. In recent years the emphasis of the Department has shifted from a traditional law enforcement role to a more pro-active, community policing style to better serve its citizenry.
During the last thirteen years, the Department has fully computerized all operations. A new IMC computerized dispatching, reporting and e-mail software package was acquired and implemented, along with new computerized links to the Rhode Island State Police (RILETS) and the FBI (NCIC). In addition, we have equipped all of our patrol vehicles for supervisors and patrol officers with state-of-the-art mobile data terminals that allow immediate access to federal, state and local files. The front communication center has also been completely renovated.
The Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA) awarded National Reaccreditation to the Department for the second time in March of 2007. To attain this goal, the Department satisfied 459 professional standards. These awards, along with our initial National Accreditation Award in 2001, are significant accomplishments which reflect the Department’s continued pride, dedication, and professionalism. We now have a formal Policy and Procedures Manual that provides all employees with an easily accessible, centralized source of policies, procedures, rules and regulations; a manual that is logically arranged by subject matter and tabbed for easy use; and lastly, a manual that raises the professionalism and accountability of the Department and its employees.
The Department has also embarked on an aggressive Capital Improvement Program to improve equipment and facilities. Improvements include: the construction of a free-standing police maintenance garage in the rear parking lot, replacement of existing firearms, establishment of Computer Network Administrator’s position, acquisition of a marine patrol boat, off-road patrol vehicle and breathalyzer machine through grant funds, repaving, lining, fencing and illuminating the rear parking lot, installation of a new generator, electrical system and telephone system, and revamping the HVAC system.
The U.S. Department of Justice/COPS Office awarded five grants to the Department resulting in the hiring of two full-time community policing officers, a full-time juvenile officer, a full-time school resource officer, along with the installation of mobile data terminals in all patrol vehicles.
The Department created and established a Written Directive System, mandatory 40-hour, in-service training program, a mandatory management-training program for all commissioned and non-commissioned officers, a formalized Field Training Officer Program, a Performance Evaluation Management System, employee job descriptions and upgrades to its local area network through additional computer workstations.
In addition, we’ve also created a marine boat and beach patrol to establish a police presence on the local ponds and beaches, and an off-road vehicle patrol. We’ve also added a second DARE Officer and a School Resource Officer in the local school system. We’ve reinstated the Boy Scouts of America Law Enforcement Explorers Post Program, established “Project Safe Return” to provide immediate emergency information to assist the safe and speedy return of children, the elderly, or handicapped individuals at risk should they become lost due to separation from a caregiver, and created a Student Internship Program to afford college students the opportunity to explore careers in law enforcement, while providing practical experience that generates college credits.
The vision of the Smithfield Police Department is to be recognized as the most professional, well-respected, highly trained, proactive, community-oriented law enforcement agency in Rhode Island.
The mission of the Smithfield Police Department is to establish and maintain a proactive partnership with residents and business owners to work together in solving problems facing our community. The success of this mission depends upon a continuous effort to increase awareness and develop higher levels of trust and understanding among police officers and their community.
In furthering this partnership, we pledge our dedication and diligence in protecting life, liberty and property; preserving the peace; and enforcing laws and ordinances. We are committed to improving all aspects of public safety, reducing the fear and incidence of crime, extending and improving our community programs, and maintaining the highest degree of respect for individual rights and human dignity. We are committed to honoring the sacred public trust by ensuring that the Smithfield Police Department adheres to the highest professional law enforcement standards. We shall continuously strive toward attaining excellence, removing barriers to communication, and providing our employees with effective leadership, supervision and training in a quality work environment.