Virginia Tech Police Department

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Virginia Tech Police
VTPolice.png
Logo of the Virginia Tech Police
Motto Ut Prosim (that I may serve)
Agency overview
Formed 1945
Legal personality Governmental: Government agency
Jurisdictional structure
Legal jurisdiction Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
General nature
Operational structure
Sworn members 52
Agency executive Kevin Foust, Chief
Specialty units Investigative Division, Community Outreach Unit, K9 Unit, Emergency Response Team

The Virginia Tech Police Department (VTPD) is a nationally accredited police department with jurisdiction over Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. The departments original accreditation with CALEA was awarded on November 18, 1995 and the department has continued with re-accreditation. In November 2015, the department met "gold standard" and also won CALEA's “Accreditation with Excellence” award. [1]

The department is located at 330 Sterrett Drive, building 0523, in the Public Safety Building located on campus behind Lane Stadium. A satellite office is located in the first floor of War Memorial Gym near the center of campus. The satellite office grew out of a pilot project launched in November 2006 and became fully operational at the beginning of the Spring 2007 semester. This office is not staffed full-time and is also the headquarters of the campus bicycle patrol.[2]

The department has 52 full-time sworn officers who are complemented in their duties by 15 civilian staff and numerous security personnel. In 2016, VTPD joined the New River Valley Emergency Communications Regional Authority with all the other police, sheriff, fire and rescue agencies in Montgomery County. [3] The department's investigations unit consists of a detective lieutenant, a detective sergeant and four detectives. There is also one detective assigned to the New River Regional Drug Task Force and another assigned to the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force.[4] The force is headed by Chief Kevin Foust.

VTPD officers have jurisdiction and legal authority on all university-owned property and work closely and share jurisdiction with the Blacksburg Police Department, the Montgomery County Sheriff's Department and other law enforcement agencies.

Virginia Tech President Charles Steger and Virginia governor Tim Kaine thank Virginia Tech Police Chief Wendell Flinchum and the Virginia Tech first responders for their work during the Virginia Tech massacre.

The force came to world attention in April 2007, following the Virginia Tech shooting.

Duties[edit]

Beyond general law enforcement, the department provides services including Rape Aggression Defense classes, the Student's and Faculty/Staff Police Academies, child seat installation & education, weapon storage, and fingerprinting for background and security clearance checks. The department also has a three officer K9 unit (one tracking/narcotic K9 and two explosive detection K9's), an Emergency Response Team or SWAT Team and other specialized units. The department is responsible for the well being of more than 50,000 students, employees, and visitors at Virginia Tech, 24 hours a day and also oversees the Virginia Tech Rescue Squad which is the second oldest all volunteer collegiate rescue squad in the country.

The Residence Life Resource Officer (RLRO) Program began in 2011 in partnership with the Housing and Residence Life Division of Student Affairs at Virginia Tech. This collaborative public safety initiative was designed to compliment the existing community outreach "Adopt a Hall Program", which has been in effect since the fall of 2001. In addition to having every patrol officer assigned a residence hall as part of the Adopt a Hall program, the Residence Life Resource Officer Program has 4 full-time officer positions that are assigned to work specifically within the housing units in a public safety, leadership and educational capacity with students. The RLRO office is located behind Dietrick Dining Hall on the side facing Payne Hall.

VTPD, in collaboration with the One Love Foundation, offers multiple programs each year to raise awareness about the warning signs of abuse and activate communities to work to change the statistics about relationship violence. One Love was founded in 2010 following the death of University of Virginia student Yeardley Love who was beaten to death by her ex- boyfriend.

Also, the Virginia Tech Police Department sponsors a nighttime safety escort service called “Safe Ride.” This service is available to all students, faculty, staff, and visitors to the university. Safe Ride operates from dusk until dawn.

In addition, the Virginia Criminal Justice Services Board has designated Virginia Tech as a "Crime Prevention Campus." Virginia Tech is the fourth university in the commonwealth to receive the distinction in recognition of exemplary crime prevention services and initiatives.

Chiefs[edit]

Chief Flinchum (retired)[edit]

Wendell Flinchum is the former chief of the department and retired in 2014.[5] He is a native of Blacksburg and had spent his entire career with the Virginia Tech police beginning part-time in 1983 while a student at Virginia Tech. He has worked as a safety escort, a dispatcher, a patrol officer and a detective. He joined the department full-time in 1985. He also trained at the FBI National Academy. Flinchum was named chief over 90 candidates.[5][6][7]

Chief Foust[edit]

Kevin Foust was named chief of police and director of campus security at Virginia Tech in August 2014, a position he held on an interim basis since February 2014. Foust joined the Virginia Tech Police Department in 2011 as the deputy chief of police and assistant director of security after a 24-year career with the FBI. As deputy chief and assistant director of security, Foust managed security operations for the university’s facilities across Virginia and overseas. In addition, he led the police department’s administrative division, which included communications, community outreach, security, and the Safe Ride program. Foust began his career at the FBI in 1987. He served in several capacities including unit chief of the Usama Bin Laden Unit in the Counterterrorism Division. He was the supervisory senior resident agent for Southwest Virginia prior to joining the university. Foust received two bachelor's degrees from Grove City College.[8]

Fallen officers[edit]

Officer Date of Death Details
Officer Deriek W. Crouse
Thursday, December 8, 2011
Shot and killed during a traffic stop

References[edit]

  1. ^ "CALEA database". CALEA Online. Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-05-15. 
  2. ^ "Virginia Tech Police Department opens satellite office in War Memorial Gym". Virginia Tech News. 2007-03-12. Retrieved 2007-05-15. 
  3. ^ "Patrol Division". Virginia Tech Police. Retrieved 2010-09-03. 
  4. ^ "Investigations Unit". Virginia Tech Police. 2010-09-03. Retrieved 2007-05-15. 
  5. ^ a b Moore, Martha T. (2007-04-17). "2nd crisis in year for police chief". USA Today. Retrieved 2008-06-21. 
  6. ^ "Virginia Tech police chief praised for calm leadership". CNN. April 17, 2007. Retrieved 2008-06-21. 
  7. ^ "Tech police chief studying up on his job". Roanoke Times. Retrieved 2008-06-21. 
  8. ^ "Virginia Tech News". Virginia Tech. Retrieved 2015-04-16. 

External links[edit]