Since being accredited with the Commission of Florida Accreditation in 2004, the Palmetto Police Department has successfully completed the reaccreditation process for the fourth consecutive time.
The department was inspected by a team of experienced assessors over the summer, who spent two days in July reviewing the department’s personnel, policies, training, equipment, the communications center, record keeping and property and evidence.
“They found the Palmetto Police Department to be in compliance with 220 standards, based on Florida Statute and best practices for law enforcement agencies,” Police Chief Scott Tyler said in a news release..
The accreditation was formally granted on Oct. 26 and the department will remain in good standing with the Commission for Florida Accreditation for the next three years.
Tyler said being accredited means the department adheres to best practices for policing that cover a myriad of state statutes from how the department handles public records, communications, “and one of the biggest things is property and evidence. It’s a clearinghouse of high standards and I’m very proud of it.”
Tyler said it’s a signal to the community, “that we are very serious about professional policing and it’s a measure of confidence the public should have in us. It’s not just a rubber stamp once you are accredited. There are a lot of agencies that lose their accreditation for a variety of reasons.”
In July, the Bradenton Police Department lost its accreditation after allowing it to lapse under former chief Michael Radzilowski as he was preparing for retirement. Radzilowski said he wanted new Chief Melanie Bevan to have a “fresh start,” however the accreditation lapsed before it was revealed the department, under Bevan, asked the FBI to investigate possible thefts from its evidence room.
Tyler did not bring up Bradenton’s current situation, but said once the accreditation is lost, “they have to start all over again and I think it is harder to do that than to remain consistent with re-accreditation. For example, when we were first accredited in 2004, it took the department two years to prepare for the accreditation process because you have to make sure your policies are shipshape.”
Tyler said he’s proud of the men and women who serve the Palmetto Police Department.
“The men and women here know what the standards are in their individual job responsibilities,” he said. “They know it’s not just something the chief makes them do. It has become a part of their everyday work ethic, and I’m very proud of them.”