The West Chester Police Department was established in 1967 and has grown from a small contingent of officers to a department of nearly 100 employees (90 Police Officers and Staff) committed to keeping our community safe. It’s this Trustees opinion that our West Chester Police Department is one of the finest in the entire USA and they’re instrumental in West Chester being ranked as one of the “Best Places to Live in America”!
The West Chester Police Department, led by Police Chief Joel Herzog, is organized into three distinct bureaus, each with specific responsibilities designed to serve the community efficiently:
Administration Bureau – The Administration Bureau in the non-sworn members of the police department whose behind-the-scenes duties include, record keeping, budgeting, recruiting, asset forfeiture, property inventory, and personnel management.
Patrol Bureau – This is the most seen and recognizable bureau of the department. Their duties include the uniform marked patrols, traffic safety investigation and enforcement and the k-9 unit functions.
Support Bureau – The Support Bureau works behind-the-scenes to assist in day-to-day operations. Its responsibilities include criminal and internal investigations, surveillance, evidence collection and processing, case file management, youth aid and SWAT (Special Weapons and Tactics) operations; also school resource officers, Neighborhood Watch and similar activities.
The West Chester Police Department is funded through a separate tax levy approved by voters in 2010 which is 6.5 mills. This translates to $227.50 per year per $100,000 of property valuation (1 mill equals $35/$100,000). Through efficiency, cost containment and ‘right sizing’, our Police Department hasn’t required a new tax levy for almost 10 years which is truly amazing! The tax levy also supports our Emergency 911 Center which is located behind the Administration Building at the corner of West Chester and Cincinnati-Dayton Rds.
The Police Fund proposed 2019 budgeted expenses are $17.9 million; however, actual expenses for 2019 will come in around $14 million which is about $218 per year per resident and a resident to Officer ratio of 714-to-1, based on 64,237 residents. The West Chester Police Department responded to 46,057 calls in 2018!
Some notable expenditures for the 2019 Police Fund include:
• $1,500,000 technology upgrade to public safety system (the total cost will be shared by
Police, Fire and EMS);
• $450,000 for annual vehicle replacements;
• $29,000 to replace 20 gas masks and related equipment for SWAT and purchase 17 new masks as part of civil disturbance response;
• $25,500 for purchase of equipment designed to improve productivity at traffic crash scenes;
• $25,000 for replacement of fitness equipment to maintain physical conditioning of law enforcement personnel; and
• $25,000 for replacement of a police canine.
Personnel costs make up the largest expenditure category in the police department, approximately 77.0% including the Police Fund’s share of emergency communications dispatch costs. The 2019 budget takes into consideration the addition of six full-time police officers (hired!), a filled full-time records clerk position and a crime analyst. The six new police officers will be primarily funded through School Resource Officer agreements with Lakota and Butler Tech, but must be represented as expenses for the purpose of budget.
West Chester Police are very involved with the community and offer programs designed to create awareness, build partnerships to support crime prevention and empower residents and businesses. Making nearly 250 public appearances annually and reaching more than 20,000 people our Police Department is constantly disseminating important crime prevention information.
They offer the following Public Education, free of charge to residents and businesses:
Crime Prevention for Business, Citizen Police Academy, Self-Defense Classes, Emergency Preparedness, Internet Fraud and Police Explorer Scouts.
West Chester Police Tip Line
The West Chester Police Department recognizes the need for citizens to report observations about suspicious or unusual behavior of individuals in our community. If you witness a crime, or have knowledge of a crime, please call the West Chester Police Tip Line: (513) 759-7272. Your call is important! Tips can also be made online at ‘www.westchesteroh.org/departments/police-department/report-a-tip’.
The tip line is monitored either by a detective or by police personnel. When leaving a voicemail, callers are encouraged to leave as much detailed information as possible, including, names, addresses, vehicle license plates, descriptions of vehicles, and description of the suspicious activities. If you need to get in touch with an investigator immediately call West Chester Communications at (513) 777-2231.
All information is confidential and will be used to develop new cases or confirm cases already being investigated. Callers are also encouraged to leave information about any narcotic activities, or any other public safety concerns. Tip line callers may remain anonymous.