In 1919, it was decided by the town selectmen that a police presence was needed in the Town of Longmeadow:
“Police protection is not only requested but essential …. it has been amply demonstrated during this past year.“
HISTORY OF THE LONGMEADOW POLICE DEPARTMENT AT A GLANCE
April 1, 1920: The Longmeadow Police Department is established. Richard Warme was appointed as the first Police Chief with an operating budget of $3000 and a force of 9 special police officers.
1924: Chief Warme resigned and John S. Henderson filled his position. In that year, the first motorcycle was purchased for the purpose of traffic enforcement.
1928: The first traffic light was installed on Longmeadow Street, Route 5.
1928: Police headquarters was moved from the Albert T. Wood Post (The building now standing on Longmeadow Street across from Edgewood Avenue) to the basement of the town hall.
1941: Direct phone lines were installed in the station in 1941 (7-3311). This same number is still in effect today (567-3311).
1942: The first car communications radio is installed. Prior to this, patrol officers would periodically drive by the station and look for a flashing light. If the light was flashing, they would come in the station and gather reported information before responding to the scene.
1951: Officers are required to attend 4 weeks of academy training.
1952: The Longmeadow Police Ambulance garage is built to house the town’s ambulance.
1959: The current Police Station located at 34 Williams Street was erected and it housed both the Longmeadow Police Department and the Longmeadow Fire company.
1960: Interstate 91 is completed; Longmeadow Police Officers are required to assist Massachusetts State Police with accidents and other police matters due MSP barracks being distant (Springfield barracks Station B3 did not exist until 1982).
1961: Traffic lights installed at Williams & Laurel, Converse & Laurel and Bliss & Laurel.
1964: the first traffic radar equipment was purchased.
1989: Chief Marchese implements the D.A.R.E. Program and assigns two officers to teach the curriculum to our schools.
1992: The department transitions to the S&W .40 semiautomatic pistol (S&W 4046), replacing the Smith and Wesson .357 revolver .
1995: The first laptops are installed in the police cruisers, granting officers remote access to the RMV and Warrant Management System.
1996: Officer Pamela Chaplin is hired as the the first female officer.
1997: Civilian Dispatchers replace officers serving as police dispatch/”desk duty”.
1999: LPD police cruisers are equipped with automated external defibrillators (AED).
2000: Funds are allocated to build a new facility for the Longmeadow Fire Department; 34 Williams Street was renovated so that the Police Department could occupy the entire building.
2004: AR-15 Patrol Rifles replace/augment patrol shotguns.
2005: The department transitions to the Sig Sauer P.220 0.45 caliber semiautomatic firearms, replacing the Smith and Wesson 4046.
2009: The department transitions to the Smith and Wesson M&P 0.45 Cal. firearms, replacing the Sig Sauer P220.
2016: Naloxone (Narcan) is issued to every officer in response to an increasing number of Opioid overdoses.
2018: Electronic Control Weapons (Tasers) are issued.
2019: Longmeadow Police Department becomes an MPAC Accredited Police Department – the first municpal police department in Hampden County to become Accredited.
2020: Sgt. Danielle Rex-Bernashe becomes the department’s first female Sergeant.
2020: The department’s last Ford Crown Victoria (Car#8) is taken out of service (Ford discontinued the ubiquitous Crown Victoria Police Interceptor in 2011, replacing it with the Police Interceptor Utility (Explorer).
LONGMEADOW POLICE CHIEFS:
Richard J. Warme: 1920-1924
John S. Henderson: 1924-1939
George U. Vantrain: 1939-1943
George A. Yarsley Jr.: 1943-1976
Donald H. Abraham: 1976-1982
John S. Donaldson Jr.: 1982-1988
Richard A. Marchese: 1988-2003
Robert R. Danio: 2003-2009
Robert F. Siano: 2009-2015
John D. Stankiewicz: 2015-2020