In a Town Council Meeting on the night of December 13, 1949, a permanent Coventry Police Force was established. Gareld A. Shippee was "hereby appointed a member of the permanent police force of the Town of Coventry and is also hereby appointed permanent chief of police of the Town of Coventry." After him, five officers took the oath of office and were sworn in to their positions. They were Deputy Chief George A. Matteson, Patrolman Alva C. Niebels, Anotonio C. Ottaviano, Paul A. Green, and Victor R. Pajak.
From there the department grew to keep up with the growing population and crime rate. Even though the salary for a policeman started at $3,888, they were still able to garner candidates to attend an eight to twelve week training course given on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday nights.
Even though these officers likely didn't have much, they worked hard to keep engaged with their community and made sure to always make time to visit the future of the world...the kids!
Check out this "old-school" ad in the reminder, brought forth to try and deter young kids from stealing!
Protecting and serving the community, through Strength, Honor, and Integrity has always been an objective of the police department. In addition, having higher education degrees for our officers is something this Town has always encouraged through our hiring process.
The notion that you never stop learning in law enforcement hasn't gone away over the years. A large percentage of our current officers actually have Master's Degrees in Criminal Justice fields to go on their "duty belts." Coventry Police has always done a nice job at encouraging and supporting those wanting to continuously learn and get better at policing, through education and training opportunities.
As time went on, the Coventry Police Department has adapted to the changing times, culture, and technology. One of the most notable changes in the public eye, is always the uniforms we wear, and the cars we drive. Below you will see a collection of some of the uniform styles and changes that the CPD has endured over it's storied history.
Then around the late 80's came the uniform switch to what us here at CPD called "the grey's." Along with it came a revised patch in red, black, and white, with the Coventry elephant remaining strong to hold up the castle.
The late 90's spurred new technology, which brought on new advances in police work to where patrol cruisers could be outfitted with permanent radios, radar units, and laptops for a computer aided dispatch system. Coventry was one of the first agencies to put them in the cruisers!
And less we not forget our beloved K9 officers who always stayed steadfast to the mission; but also became great partners to their assigned officers, as well as the community.
Coventry K9 Enzo - 2006 to 2016
Coventry K9 Ammo - 2018-2020
Coventry K9 Nixo - 2021 to Present
In 2019, the Coventry Police Department embarked on some of its most notable changes, with new uniforms and a new patch design. These changes were welcomed by the rank and file as the older grey uniforms were handmade, which made it costly and took a long time for replacements. In addition, they were not as conducive to all of the law enforcement activities we needed to be able to do. Then, on the heels of that switch came the approval to construct a new police headquarters, which would be the first one actually designed as a police station for the men and woman of the CPD! The once antiquated and unsafe building was traded in for a state-of-the-art facility that was cleaner and safer for officers and visitors. A lot went into the process, for which the Coventry Police are forever grateful to the citizens of Coventry, and the building committee for all of their hard work. With these few additions, the Coventry Police Department are now better equipped at providing the Town of Coventry with modern, 21st century, high-quality policing!