The Wauchula Police Department began the process to become an accredited agency 17 years ago and was awarded their initial accredited status on June 2nd, 1999, through the Florida Commission for Law Enforcement Accreditation. As part of the process to remain accredited, the Wauchula Police Department has continued to voluntarily request and invite law enforcement assessors, from outside agencies, to come in and inspect our policies, procedures and processes to ensure that we are providing professional law enforcement services to our community utilizing the most current and best accepted practices. These assessments occur every three years and the most recent assessment occurred December 10th – 12th, 2014.
On February 25th, 2015, Chief John M. Eason, Assistant Chief Matthew Whatley, Records Manager Tammy Pearson, Victim Advocate Sandra Rojas, City Manager Terry Atchley and Assistant City Manager Olivia Minshew learned that from this most recent assessment the Wauchula Police Department was reaccredited as an Excelsior Agency. The Excelsior status is a highly sought after and prestigious award that is limited to only those agencies that have been successfully reaccredited five (5) times by the Commission. Additionally, the agencies reaccreditation interval can only be credited toward the new recognition status if conditions were not assessed by the Commission.
This award also exemplifies the level of dedication to the community and the commitment to the accreditation processes that each and every member of the Wauchula Police Department demonstrates every day. The community partnerships that were demonstrated to the Assessment Team was phenomenal. Commander Shelli Walters, from the Altamonte Springs Police Department, was the Assessment Team Leader during the most recent assessment and when addressing the Commission stated that in all of the assessments that she has conducted she has never received so many positive comments from the community regarding an individual agency.