Town of Knightdale, NC’s Police Department Joins the Elite Ranks of Nationally-Accredited Law Enforcement Agencies
Released by Brian Bowman, Town of Knightdale
After a three-year process, the Knightdale Police Department has earning national accreditation recognition from the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA). With this achievement, Knightdale joins a distinguished group of departments recognized for their professionalism and attention to procedure. Department representatives, including Chief Lawrence Capps, accepted the designation April 2, 2016, in St. Louis.
Currently, only 36 state municipalities are nationally accredited.
In 2013, Knightdale applied for this distinction, then worked for three years to evaluate internal and external policies and procedures to ensure they were consistent with CALEA’s standards, as stated on the organization’s website:
- CALEA Accreditation requires an agency to develop a comprehensive, well thought out, uniform set of written directives. This is one of the most successful methods for reaching administrative and operational goals, while also providing direction to personnel.
- CALEA Accreditation standards provide the necessary reports and analyses a CEO needs to make fact-based, informed management decisions.
- CALEA Accreditation requires a preparedness program be put in place—so an agency is ready to address natural or man-made unusual occurrences.
- CALEA Accreditation is a means for developing or improving upon an agency’s relationship with the community.
- CALEA Accreditation strengthens an agency’s accountability, both within the agency and the community, through a continuum of standards that clearly define authority, performance, and responsibilities.
- Being CALEA Accredited can limit an agency’s liability and risk exposure because it demonstrates that internationally recognized standards for law enforcement have been met, as verified by a team of independent outside CALEA-trained assessors.
- CALEA Accreditation facilitates an agency’s pursuit of professional excellence.
The CALEA evaluation team came to Knightdale in 2015 to evaluate the department’s standards and policies and to hear from the public about its relationship with Knightdale officers. After hearing from the public and taking a very detailed look at the department, evaluators invited Chief Capps and his staff to St. Louis, MO to answer questions and provide clarification, per standard procedure. After successfully communicating with the panel, Knightdale was awarded the designation.
Chief Capps sent the following message to his staff, elected officials, and the public to tell them of the news:
“Ladies and gentlemen,
I want to take a moment to express my appreciation to all those who played a role in our initial onsite process for law enforcement accreditation. The last few days have been the culmination of nearly three years of intense focus on transforming the culture and shaping the future of the Knightdale Police Department. The onsite process was administered by independent assessors, and is critical to ensuring that our agency meets the professional high standards and best practices of the law enforcement profession. We were fortunate to have our department and methods evaluated under the careful eyes of two seasoned assessors, Chief James Fox and Lieutenant Jeff McDaniel. Our team of assessors were extremely complimentary of the agency, its policies and practices, and the men and women who have worked so hard to make our organization successful. They also spoke highly of our community and its local leadership. We are happy to report there were no issues at all discovered during our audit. For an agency pursuing its initial accreditation award, this is very impressive. It is a testament to the dedication and commitment of our officers and to our many stakeholders who have supported us throughout this process.”
To those in the community who took the time to speak openly about their experiences with our department, we extend a heartfelt thanks. You are the reason we do what we do on a daily basis, and your support is valued more than you will ever know. To the Town staff who made themselves available to answer questions and provide feedback, we express our gratitude for the solid working relationships we have forged with you and your personnel over the years. And to the men and women of the Knightdale Police Department, we offer the highest praise possible. It is your sacrifice, perseverance, and passion for the career that truly made this journey possible. The best laid plans are nothing without a group of committed people to carry them forward.”
A special word of thanks goes to our Administrative Division Manager, Erin Carden. Ms. Carden has shouldered a tremendous amount of responsibility and workload to ensure that our policies, files, and supporting documentation were in order for the assessment. The process of accreditation is an arduous task, and her oversight of the project is no small thing. Her dedication and passion for accreditation is a reflection of her commitment to the Town of Knightdale. I cannot begin to express how fortunate we are to have such a gem working in our organization.”
Again, thanks to everyone for their support and involvement – no matter how small – throughout this process. The Knightdale Police Department’s best and brightest days now lay ahead of us, and we look forward to having you at our side for the incredible journey.”
The Town of Knightdale is located in Wake County, between Raleigh and Wendell NC. The town population is approximately 14,000, growing by more than 20% each year. Recently, Knightdale was named Most Affordable Community in NC.