The Village of Lancaster appointed its first police officer/Village constable, John Swartout, on May 19, 1866. The appointments were then for 3 month periods, and the officers had to report on their activities to the Village Board on a monthly basis. The first motorcycle policeman, Frank Beyer, was appointed in 1912. He was paid 50 cents per night and $3 for a Sunday. The first documented Village of Lancaster Police Chief was George Nichter, who was appointed on May 10, 1920.
The Town of Lancaster Police Department was officially established by the Lancaster Town Board on June 20, 1932. Prior to that time, the Town of Lancaster was served by constables led by a Chief. The first Police Chief of the newly established Department was Edwin Sutton.
The Town of Lancaster Police Department started a police ambulance service circa 1953, with an ambulance that was donated to the Department. Police headquarters was housed in the basement of the Town Hall from 1950-1975. In 1975, the Department moved to a larger facility at the site of the former Nike missile base on Pavement Road in the Town.
The Village of Lancaster Police Department merged with the Town of Lancaster Police Department in 2003. The Department has recently moved into our new Public Safety Building, housing both the Police Department and Town of Lancaster Court, located next to our old police headquarters on Pavement Road.
PAST TOWN OF LANCASTER POLICE CHIEFS:
Edwin R. Sutton 1931-1933
Walter G. Hasterich 1933-1935
Edward P. Bund 1935-1936
Earl S. Sweitzer 1936-1968
Victor Ott 1969-1979
Thomas E. Fowler 1979-2003
Gary S. Stoldt 2003-2010
Gerald J. Gill, Jr. 2010-2019
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