The Lebanon Police Department earned its first international accreditation certification from the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA) following a panel interview by CALEA commissioners at CALEA’s Fall Virtual Conference on November 13, 2020.
On Friday, November 13, 2020, Former Lebanon Police Chief Richard Mello, Accreditation Manager Captain Tim Cohen, Former Deputy Chief Phillip Roberts, Former Lieutenant Matthew Isham, and Consultant William Pease, appeared before a six-member panel of CALEA commissioners and CALEA staff to answer questions about the Lebanon Police Department’s recent June 2020 Virtual On-Site Assessment. The commissioners reviewed the assessment report prepared in June by a two-member assessment team of law enforcement professionals from outside of New Hampshire, who reviewed department compliance with applicable standards, conducted inspections of our facility with officers, interviewed citizens, and conducted a public hearing.
The Fall Virtual Panel consisted of Paul MacMillan (CALEA Regional Program Manager) who is a retired Chief of Police for the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority; Randy Scott (CALEA Regional Program Manager) who retired from the Oklahoma City Police Department after 44 years of law enforcement service; Joseph Schafer (CALEA Commissioner) who is a Professor of Criminology & Criminal Justice at Saint Louis University; Timothy Dunning (CALEA Commissioner) who is the Sheriff of Douglas County, Nebraska; Jacquie Daumont (CALEA Commissioner) who serves as the chief executive officer for the Alberta Justice and Solicitor General, Commercial Vehicle Enforcement; and Jon Hulsing (CALEA Commissioner) who serves as judge for the 20th Circuit Court in Ottawa County, MI.
The 42-page assessment report, written by retired Chief David Belmonte from the Lake Bluff (IL) Police Department, following his team’s virtual visit, concluded that the Lebanon Police Department is a very professional law enforcement agency committed to providing a high level of law enforcement services to the community.
CALEA is a voluntary international program that demonstrates a department’s commitment to excellence, while serving its citizens and showing that the agency is meeting internationally established best practices for law enforcement agencies. CALEA Accreditation is the mark of professional excellence and the gold standard in public safety.
In the agency’s quest for CALEA Accreditation, the Lebanon Police Department is required to comply with over 170 standards as set forth by CALEA. The agency is required to establish written directives for those standards, as well as providing proofs of compliance that the agency is in fact in compliance with each of the standards. The department began the three-year self-assessment period after enrolling in the program in January of 2018.
In New Hampshire, there are over 200 law enforcement agencies. Only 15 of these agencies are accredited by CALEA, including the Lebanon Police Department.
“I am extremely proud of the men and women of the Lebanon Police Department for their dedication and buy-in to this process. Without their hard work, this achievement would not have been possible,” stated Former Chief Richard Mello. “Achieving CALEA Accreditation was a major goal of mine once I was appointed Chief of Police in December of 2015.”
Former Chief Mello further stated that, “CALEA Accreditation is truly the gold standard in public safety and the Lebanon Police Department will continue to strive to provide the highest quality service to the citizens and visitors of the City of Lebanon.”