HEWITT, Texas (KWTX) The Hewitt Police Department was honored by the Texas Police Chiefs Association Monday night for being designated a Texas Best Practices Recognized Agency.
TPCA member Floyd Mitchell, the outgoing Chief of Police in Temple, presented the agency with a plaque during Monday night's city council meeting.
"It means your agency is one of the very best in the state," Mitchell told the council. "You should be very proud."
Out of the more than 2,400 law enforcement agencies in the state, Hewitt is only the 158th to achieve the designation.
"I got a letter from the President of the Texas Police Chiefs that puts us in the top five percent in the State of Texas," said Hewitt Police Chief Jim Devlin. "It's basically a tough club to get into."
Becoming a Texas Best Practices Recognized Agency is not an easy or quick process--Devlin says it was two-years in the making.
"It's 168 standards that have to be met and proofs of compliance," said Devlin. "You have outside agencies, these assessors, these chiefs come in and basically put you under a microscope and look through everything you do to see that you met this specific requirement, and ultimately, at the end of the day, they found that we did."
Devlin said they evaluate everything from use-of-force training to citizens' rights.
"A whole litany of things they put together to achieve that status," he says.
Being a civil service agency made it even more difficult to meet the requirements, he said.
Devlin is so proud of his agency and staff, he ordered sticker-seals of the achievement to be displayed on the backs of units.
"It's a gold standard for law enforcement," he said.