Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety

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Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety
Abbreviation KDPS
Agency overview
Formed 1983
Superseding agency Kalamazoo Police Department and Kalamazoo Fire Department
Employees 327
Legal personality Governmental: Government agency
Jurisdictional structure
Operations jurisdiction* State of Michigan, USA
Legal jurisdiction Kalamazoo, MI
General nature
Operational structure
Headquarters 150 E. Crosstown Kalamazoo, MI
KDPS Website
* Divisional agency: Division of the country, over which the agency has usual operational jurisdiction.

The Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety is the department in charge of police, fire and rescue in Kalamazoo, Michigan. It is the largest public safety department in the nation, with over 300 sworn officers. The Kalamazoo Public Safety Department was created in 1983 when the Kalamazoo Fire Department and the Kalamazoo Police Department merged.[1]


The mission of Kalamazoo Public Safety is to provide for the safety and welfare of all citizens and visitors to the City of Kalamazoo and to protect them from the loss of life and property from fire and crime. This mission includes, but is not limited to, the maintenance of order, the promotion of crime and fire prevention programs, the investigation of crimes leading to the apprehension of perpetrators, recovery of property, and the providing of emergency medical services.


The department has many divisions.

This division headed by the Public Safety chief leads and manages all Public Safety operations.

Criminal Investigations:
This division investigates criminal complaints it also is in charge of operations of the Crime Lab.

  • Crime Lab
Processes Evidence in criminal investigations

Fire Marshal:
Investigation of Fire Scenes, charged with Fire Prevention, Fire Inspection and all fire operations.

Kalamazoo Valley Enforcement Team:
Multi-jurisdictional narcotics team

Office of Professional Standards:
Investigates complaints of officer misconduct.

Primary Response Force for police, fire and rescue services. Division composed of:

  • K–9
supports narcotics and operations divisions with K–9 services.
  • Traffic Enforcement
Enforces traffic laws.
  • Honor Guard
Represents public safety at parades, funerals and memorials.
  • Special Weapons and Tactics
High risk situations
  • Community Public Safety
Addresses Neighborhood issues.
  • Explorers
Composed of people aged 14–21 interested in a law enforcement career.
  • Bomb Squad
Disposes of explosive ordnance.
  • Training
Training of Public Safety staff

Recruits officer's for Public Safety


On April 18, 2011, while responding to a shots fired call in Kalamazoo's Edison neighborhood, PSO Eric Zapata was fatally shot. Officer Zapata was the first officer in Kalamazoo to be killed in the line of duty. A funeral was held in his honor on April 26, 2011 at Miller Auditorium. Thousands of people, some from around the United States showed up to pay their final respects.[2]


External links[edit]