POLICE DEPARTMENT GETS ACCREDITATION STATUS
The East Brandywine Police Department is now officially regarded by the Pennsylvania Chief’s of Police Association as an accredited police department, a distinction few police departments get.
At the regular board of supervisors meeting Wednesday evening, East Brandywine Police Chief Mark D. Kocsi formally announced the recognition given to the township’s police department.
“It is an honor to serve alongside you each and every day,” he said, addressing all of the residents, family, friends, and police officers present.
He said during the ceremony that, Patrolman Jeffery Yankanich, a 17-year veteran of the police department, volunteered to take on the job as the accreditation manager.
Yankanich said he wanted to take on the project.
“He did a phenomenal job,” Kocsi said.
Accreditation is a status few police departments attain; just a little over 100 departments are accredited out of 1,200 in Pennsylvania, and only a handful of police departments in Chester County are accredited.
“Accreditation is not only about what we do right,” Kocsi said. “It is also about making
sure that when we do something wrong, that we are transparent about our mistake, and that we take the necessary steps to correct the wrongdoing.”
Before Kocsi presented the officers with their accreditation pins, he also acknowledged two police department secretaries, Rose Jamison and Jackie Smedley for their support as well.
Also attending the ceremony was Magisterial District Judge Jeffrey Valocchi and the chief of the Chester County Detectives, Kevin Dykes.
From the accreditation commission, William Daly, chief of Horsham Township police in Montgomery County, and
Ronald Macpherson, chief of Upper Southampton police in Bucks County, were also present and likewise congratulated the East Brandywine police officers.
Status as an accredited department is not permanent, police departments can lose their status if they do not maintain the level of professionalism that earned them that status in the first place.
Phoenixville, North Coventry, Westtown-East Goshen, Upper Uwchlan, and now East Brandywine are the only accredited agencies in Chester County, according to the Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police Association.
The program was introduced by the Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police Association in 2001, and attempts to improve the quality of police departments across the state by reviewing policy and procedures, then updating practices in the department to meet those procedures.
The last step is an evaluation to determine if the police department is worthy of accreditation.
According to the association’s website, benefits of being an accredited department include improving relations between law enforcement and the community, reducing exposure to lawsuits, and decreasing some liability insurance expenses.
Kocsi said “accreditation validates at the highest level the promises we have made to you.”
Jeffery Yankanich, the accreditation manager for the East Brandywine Police Department, carries the accreditation plaque as he walks by his fellow officers.
Most of the East Brandywine Township Police Department was present for the ceremony on Wednesday.