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Message from Mayor Sorace about Police Chief Jarrad Berkihiser’s Retirement

October 2, 2020 | Bureau of Police Mayor's Office

Police Chief Jarrad Berkihiser is retiring from his position effective October 31, 2020. Chief Berkihiser and I have been working diligently to advance the work of the Bureau of Police, and significant progress has been made.

I want to thank Chief Berkihiser for his more than two decades of service to our city. He joined the Lancaster City Bureau of Police in May of 1994 as a patrolman and has worked through the ranks of sergeant, lieutenant, patrol captain, and chief. He has served not only our city but our country.

Under his leadership, a significant amount of work has been accomplished to build upon the success of the Lancaster City Bureau of Police, including but not limited to:

· Implementing bureau-wide use of body cameras

· Improving the use of force policy

· Ensuring our police bureau far exceeds state minimums in training requirements, including de-escalation training for every officer

· Establishing a community outreach unit within the bureau and creating the position of Community Engagement Sergeant

· Hiring the first police social worker

· Working with the Second Chance Program, a law enforcement led addiction diversion program.

In addition, he has ensured the ongoing daily operations of the bureau and its response to the 84,000 plus calls for service and some 40,000 reported incidents last year alone. Again, I want to thank Chief Berkihiser for his dedication and commitment to the City.

In the meantime, the duties of Chief will be shared among Captains Umstead, Stebbins, and Winters. They are committed to ensuring the safety of our community and ongoing operations of the bureau.

I recognize that there will be many conversations in the days and weeks ahead about the future leadership and direction of the Lancaster City Bureau of Police. I look forward to engaging in these conversations with the many stakeholders in our community. For now, today is about Chief Berkihiser’s retirement and honoring his 26 years of service.

Thank you.

– Mayor Danene Sorace