Department History

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Department History


1985 Group Image

Photo of the 1985 Maryland Heights Police Department

On May 9, 1985, the City of Maryland Heights incorporated, and on August 16 of that year, the Maryland Heights Police Department was formed. City staff, including the MHPD, operated out of a converted warehouse at 212 Millwell Drive. There were 40 commissioned police officers that came from a variety of small and large area police departments, including one officer that had been with the Missouri State Highway Patrol. Five dispatchers and two secretaries made up the noncommissioned personnel. The officers painted the interior of the warehouse and constructed the first jail, which consisted of four wooden walls and a chair. 

These officers took to the streets on August 17 in ten used police vehicles purchased from the Missouri State Highway Patrol. The vehicles sported the "gum drop" type police light bars and operated on a radio frequency in the 800 mhz band. The officers were under the command of Chief Neil Kurlander, Deputy Chief Thomas O'Connor, Captain Robert Nichols, and Sergeant Earl Rhodus.

The internationally accredited department has since grown to 78 commissioned police officers, 17 non-commissioned employees and 12 reserve officers. Serious crimes (murders, rapes, robbery) are rare in Maryland Heights, and the department's rate for cleaning up crimes is higher than the national average.

In October of 2008, city staff, including the Police Department, moved into the new Maryland Heights Government Center located at 11911 Dorsett Road, just down the street from the old station.

In 2009, the Maryland Heights Police Department became only the second agency in the State of Missouri to receive certification under the Missouri Police Chief's Certification Program.  In 2016, the Maryland Heights Police Department received international accreditation at the annual conference of the Commission of Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA).

The men and women of the Maryland Heights Police Department take pride in their history and look forward to the challenges of the future.

Photo of the 2015 Maryland Heights Police Department