Dating back to the late 1800s, residents of the Town of Bourne were protected by Constables that functioned as "Keepers of the Lock-up". The "lock-up" was located behind what is now the current police station at 175 Main St.
On March 7, 1921, the Bourne Police Department was established, with Harry Cunningham being named the first Chief of Police. He was followed by Joseph Gordon and Eugene Stowell.
In 1927, Thomas Leonard was appointed Chief of police. The following year, J. Thomas Wallace was named the town's first patrolman. His duties included patrolling the town on his Indian Motorcycle and assisting with operations at the two prisoner cells located in the basement of the Town Hall.
William Murdock was appointed Chief of Police in 1930 and oversaw the purchase of the town's first patrol car and the moving of the police station to the new fire station on Main Street (the current Fire Department headquarters). A portable prisoner cell was installed in the fire department. The police department would continue to operate out of the fire station until 1937.
In 1934, William Crump was appointed to Chief of Police, remaining in that position until 1942. The police department moved to a newly constructed wing of the Town Hall in 1937. This wing now houses the Town Administrator's office. The department remained in that location until 1959.
James O'Toole was appointed as Chief of Police in 1942 and oversaw the building of the current police station. The new Bourne Police Department building was completed in 1959 and dedicated on June 13, 1959.
Chief O'Toole remained in that position until 1962 when Henry Maiolini was appointed Chief of Police. Chief Maiolini would hold that position for the longest tenure, 25 years, in the history of the Town of Bourne. Chief Maiolini oversaw several expansions to the Bourne Police station, including the addition of a garage storage room, a "drunk tank" and the entire second story. These expansions created the station as it appears today. Chief Maiolini retired in 1987, with Dennis Mannix being appointed to the position for two years.
In 1989, John Ford was appointed Chief of Police and would hold that position until his retirement in 2007. Chief Ford would be followed by Chief Earl Baldwin, who held the position from 2007-2010. Both Chief Ford and Chief Baldwin would go on to be elected as Town Selectmen after their retirement.
In 2010, Dennis Woodside was appointed Chief of Police and remains in that position today. Chief Woodside has overseen a redesign of the department patch, redesign of the department's police cruisers, a migration from Ford Crown Victoria sedans to Ford Police Interceptor SUVs for patrol vehicles, the addition of a police K9 unit and the addition of many new officers to replace vacancies.
The department currently employs 46 sworn officers, 3 civilian dispatchers, 3 civilian administrators, 1 custodian and 1 police K9. Police vehicles include Ford Police Interceptor SUVs, Ford Crown Victoria sedans (patrol and unmarked), Ford Taurus sedans, mountain bikes, ATVs, and a Harley Davidson motorcycle.
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BOURNE POLICE DEPARTMENT