Shippensburg Police Department


Fred A. Scott, Chief of Police


60 West Burd Street ~ Shippensburg, Pennsylvania 17257 ~ Department: 717.532.7361 Fax: 717.532.2313

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Police Organization History


From 1819 until 1871, the one law enforcement officer in the Borough was called a constable and he is still called a constable in Shippensburg Township.

After 1871, he was called a policeman. After 1920. the one policeman had a temporary assistant for special and emergency occasions and the regular policeman was then titled •"Chief."

On Dec. 15, 1932, while Chief Edmund J. Hunter was policeman, a second full-time officer. Albert G. Bitting, was added to the force and about a year later, a third officer, William Brennan.

Civil Defense work in World War II created an auxiliary police body. The two fire companies also designated and trained fire police. After WWII, these auxiliary units were loosely knit but in the 1960's they became a single, well trained, fully uniformed group of officers who now supplement the regular force over Friday evening rush hours, holidays, emergencies, etc.

Taken from “The Shippensburg Story 1730 – 1970” William H. Burkhart Author

When the first people came to Shippensburg, they barded together to protect themselves and their property. As more came, they needed laws and courts. The sheriff was a county officer who had to enforce the laws all over the county. He could use deputies when he needed them.

The Pennsylvania Legislature declared Shippensburg on January 21, 1819. The first election for officers of the town was held in April 1818. These officers were the Chief Burgess, an assistant Burgess, a town council, and a town clerk. These officers met in the home of the chief burgess. Captain Joseph McKinney was the first burgess and Mr. Jacob Keyner was the first constable (police). Later a treasurer, street commissioner, and a tax assessor were appointed. In 1882, the borough was divided into wards for voting. In 1960, Shippensburg went from Burgess and Council Plan to the Borough Manager Plan. Mr. Walter K. Smith was the first Borough Manager. In 1962, the Burgess was changed to Mayor and Dr. Harry L. Kriner became the first Mayor. The town council and burgess were responsible for law and order, the police, taxes, utilities, safety and health of the community.

The town council first met in the homes of the members. Then a special building called the Council House was built about 1843 on King St. and Prince St. A little brick jail stood behind it with its door on Prince Street. Those buildings were torn down and a larger brick building was built at the same place and called the Municipal Building. This building was built in 1928. In 1968, a new Municipal Building was built of brick on West Burd Street (now the Shippensburg Police Department).


The following information has been compiled for the Shippensburg Police Department and Shippensburg Historical Society during the fall of 2006. Three graduate students at Shippensburg University created this compilation of sources. The purpose of this work is to aide future researchers of Shippensburg Police history. Much of the research was done through the use of newspaper, Shippensburg Borough Council Minutes, and other sources available to the current Chief of Police, Chief Fred Scott.

David J. Drumheller,
Marijon Shearer,

Jennifer Frey
Graduate Student
Shippensburg University

02 April 1853- Michael Winters, Constable

06 April 1854- Michael Winters, Constable

24 March 1855- Samuel Speese, Constable

01 April 1856- Samuel Speese, Constable

18 April 1857- George W. Shade, Constable

30 March 1858- George W. Keller, Constable

26 April 1859- Solomon Nead, Constable

16 March 1860- I.S. Rippey, Constable

13 May 1861- George Shade SR., Constable

31 March 1862- George Shade SR., Constable

25 April 1863- Henry C. Johnston, Constable

29 March 1864- J. Hikes, Constable

23 March 1866- Jacob L. Keefer, Constable

10 April 1867- Jacob L. Keefer, Constable

24 March 1868- Isaiah W. Hykes, Constable

24 March 1869- I.W. Hykes, Constable

24 March 1870- I.W. Hykes, Constable

24 March 1871- Jacob Keefer, Constable

04 May 1872- Jacob Keefer, Constable

08 August 1873- Jacob Keefer, Constable

10 March 1874- Samuel Winters, Constable

03 April 1875- No Constable Specified

03 April 1876- John Miller, Constable

07 April 1877- John Miller, Constable
**Note “May 9th 1877 John A. Witmer Police Chief Affirmed”***

1878- John Miller, Police Chief

07 April 1879-John A. Witmer, Chief of Police, Street Commissioner, and Director of the Poor

07 May 1880- J. L. Rippey, Policeman and Street Commissioner.

04 April 1881- J. L. Rippey, Chief of Police and Street Commissioner

03 April 1882- No Chief listed during election

02 April 1883- David Winters, Chief of Police, Street Commissioner

03 April 1883- Description of the responsibilities of Chief of Police
-Will be uniformed
-Salary $200/Year
-Employ two sub-police on Saturday evenings and when council designates
-Each will receive $0.50 for each night on duty
-Each will receive $1.00 per full day of work

07 April 1884- David Winters, Police Chief

02 March 1885- David Winters Chief of Police
- Thomas Kane, Assistant Police Chief

No entry for elections in 1886

07 April 1887- David Winters, Police Chief
- Thomas J. Kane, Assistant Police Chief

05 March 1888- David Winters, Police Chief
- Henry Smith, Assistant Police Chief

04 March 1889- David Winters, Chief of Police
- Henry Smith, Assistant Police Chief

03 March 1890- David Winters, Chief of Police
-Henry Smith, Assistant Police Chief

02 March 1891- David Winters, Chief of Police
-Henry Smith, Assistant Police Chief

07 March 1892- Robert L. Barr, Chief of Police
- Samuel M. Keefer, Assistant Police Chief

06 March 1893- Samuel M. Keefer, Police Chief
- Davis A. Shaefer, Assistant Police Chief

05 March 1894- Davis A. Shaefer, Police Chief
- Robert L. Barr, Assistant Police Chief

04 March 1895- W.O. Elserode, Police Chief
-R.L. Barr, Assistant Police Chief

02 March 1896- W.O. Elserode, Police Chief
-J.S. Evelhoch, Assistant Police Chief
-D.A. Sheaffer, Assistant Police Chief

01 March 1897- W.O. Elserode, Police Chief
- David Scheaffer, Assistant Police Chief

07 March 1898- W.O. Elserode, Police Chief
-Thomas Kane, Assistant Police Chief

06 March 1899- J. L. Taylor, Chief of Police
- James Shover, Assistant Police Chief

05 March 1900- Joseph Taylor, Police Chief
- Samuel M. Keefer, Assistant Police Chief

04 March 1901- Joseph Taylor, Police Chief
- J.F. Holby, Assistant Police Chief

21 March 1902- Thomas J. Kane, Police Chief
- J. F. Holby, Assistant Police Chief

02 March 1903- Thomas J. Kane, Police Chief
- James Barklow, Assistant Police Chief

07 March 1904- Thomas J. Kane Police Chief
- M. Speese, Assistant Police Chief

06 March 1905- Harry Savage, Chief of Police

05 March 1906- Harry Savage, Chief of Police

No entry for Police Chief in 1907

02 March 1908- Harry McElhaire, Chief of Police
-William Speese, Assistant Police Chief

01 March 1909- Harry McElhaire, Chief of Police.

07 March 1910- Harry McElhaire, Chief of Police

01 January 1912- Thomas J. Kane, Chief of Police

05 January 1914- W.O. Ellsrode, Chief of Police

05 January 1916- W.O. Ellsrode, Chief of Police

07 January 1918- John Eaton, Chief of Police

1920-1921- S.S. Bolan

02 January 1922- S.W. Kline, Chief of Police

07 January 1924- William E. Daugherty, Chief of Police

04 January 1926- Robert E. Ditzler, Chief of Police

06 January 1930- Robert Burns, Chief of Police

05 January 1931- Robert Burns, Chief of Police
- Roy Boldosser Traffic Officer and Night Patrolman

07 January 1932- Robert Burns, Chief of Police

08 January 1934- E.J. Hunter, Chief of Police
- Albert Bitting, Patrolman

06 January 1936- E.J. Hunter, Chief of Police
-Albert Bitting, Patrolman
- William Brennan, Patrolman

Beginning of Police Force-Regular and salaried three-month renewal: 03 January 1938

03 January 1938- E.J. Hunter, Chief of Police
-A.G. Bitting, Patrolman
- William Brennan, Patrolman

02 May 1938- all three appointed for balance of their 2-year terms

08 January 1940- E.J. Hunter, chief of police
- A. G. Bitting, William Brennan, patrolmen,
- All for three-month period, subject to renewal at end of three months
-Chief’s salary cut $25/ month; patrolmen salaries increased $10/ month each

03 April 1940- All three reappointed for three months

08 July 1940- All three appointed for balance of two-year term

09 June 1941- Bitting resigned, Glen Rotz hired to replace him as patrolman

14 July 1941- Rotz hire rescinded, Rotz hired as utility employee at lower salary, force reduced to two officers.

October 1941- Rotz had sued the borough and council was responding to the suit.

29 December 1941- Three-man Police Civil Service Commission appointed: John E. Jones (two year term), DeKeller Stamy (four year); Rev. William Galbraith (six year)

January 1942- Hunter paid one full paycheck ($55); one partial paycheck ($11).

09 February 1942- Burgess had appointed Bitting “temporarily.” Council tabled new chief, named burgess temporary chief. Voted to hire another patrolman at $100/ mo.

09 March 1942- William Brennan named chief; David S. Eagle, patrolman, hired for one month.

02 April 1942- Brennan requested third officer; Eagle hired permanently

11 May 1942- Daniel Orris hired

12 October 1942- Texas Lunch owner Nick Papoutsis complained about police protection on South Earl Street (“The Bowery”). Council authorized burgess “to employ as many special police as necessary to keep order”

10 November 1942- council approves police commission’s 22-point rules and regulations for police department – among the regulations, officers to be age 21-60, weigh at least 145 pounds and be at least 5 feet, 5 inches; score at least 70 on a three-part exam. Rules established to address complaints, “dereliction of duties.” Burgess advised to have DA Orris’s resignation by Nov. 11, effective Nov. 30

14 December 1942- Wilbur Detweiler hired to replace Orris

14 April 1943- Hired: Samuel W. Harper, Robert Donald Robinson. Harper hired to work on parking meters, Robinson as patrolman.

10 May 1943- Wilbur Detweiler appointed permanent member of police department.

14 June 1943- Burgess RS Brunner’s resignation “came as a surprise” to council. Council president Henry Luhrs to serve as burgess until new hire.

10 August 1943- Elmer Zinn sworn as Burgess.

20 September 1943- Reference to probationary period for Samuel Harper, who “will not be hired.”
-Donald Robinson also “not satisfactory,” both to be notified they will not get permanent appointment, both “appointed provisionally” until next meeting.

08 November 1943- Harper appointed for rest of biennium, with special duty for meters and traffic. Robinson’s temporary position discontinued immediately.

13 December 1943- Harper resigned.

03 January 1944- Charles Potts and Perry Foltz reappointed for one year probationary period. No mention of original appointment.

11 September 1944- Position approved for parking meter officer at $125 per month. No one named.

March – August 1944- Disbursements show paychecks for Andrew Budihas.
September- November 1944 disbursements show paychecks for John Bishop.

04 December 1944- John Bishop resigned the force. Reuben Zinn resigned as parking meter caretaker. December disbursements show first paychecks for Donald Needy.

12 March 1945- Burgess Zinn requested committee of two councilmen to appoint a chief of police. Disbursements show Brennan got checks through February 1945; Detweiler began receiving half pay; Donald Neady (new spelling) continued full time.

09 April 1945- Harry Miller hired at $150 per month, effective April 15, 1945.
Disbursements show Detweiler dropped from payroll April 1945. Disbursements show paychecks for (Chief?) Russell Beck started April 1945. $97.90 per pay = $195.80/ month.

14 May 1945- Burgess Zinn suggested a third officer be hired
Curfew ordinance presented (under 16, off the street between 10 p.m.-5 a.m.)

09 July 1945- Wilbur Detweiler, inactive officer, asked to turn in his equipment to Russell R. Beck, chief of police

10 September 1945- Special Police Committee authorized to hire three policemen, which would bring the total to five. Consideration of Wilbur Detweiler’s return to service.

10 December 1945- Officer Detweiler approved at rate of $150 per month. Effective 12-1-45. p.89 November-December 1945 disbursements show paychecks for Beck, Joseph Rideout, Clarence E. Sterrett.

07 January 1946- Russell R. Beck re-appointed chief of police for two years; Clarence Sterrett and Joseph Rideout appointed as officers for two years.

13 February 1946- Police budget for 1946: $6,500 (total borough budget $24,750).
Salary approved for special officers, 75 cents per hour.

13 March 1946- Burgess Zinn requests another policeman.
Chief Beck says a ventilator is needed in the police and jail toilets.

10 April 1946- George W. Heckman hired as meter patrolman at $140 per month, effective April 16.p.100. W.E. Detweiler dismissed, effective April 1.

14 August 1946- three patrol officers, with Rideout as spokesman, ask council for a raise, saying “it was impossible to make ends meet on the wages being received, because of the advance in price of practically everything.” Council voted increase of 10 percent, effective Aug. 1, 1956.

11 September 1946- Chief Beck asks for a raise, request forwarded to finance department. (Disbursements for September show increase to $100 per pay)

23 December 1946- Burgess Zinn reported that Joseph Rideout had been suspended Dec. 14, 1946, “for conduct unbecoming an officer.” Rideout dismissed. Resolution to re-activate the police commission “which has been in an inactive status since the beginning of World War II.” Commission to find candidates for open patrolman position and for a new chief, as “a vacancy in the position of Chief of Police is imminent.” Resolution to establish pension plan for policemen Clarence Edgar Sterrett and George Wesley Heckman.

30 December 1946- Russell Beck resigns as chief; Edmund J. Hunter appointed “to serve until further action by council.”

13 January 1947- Council told police commission that it wants all officers to be certified through Civil Service.

10 February 1947- Patrolman Samuel R. Railing hired, effective 2-15-47.
Police Chief Edmund J. Hunter and patrolmen Clarence Sterrett and George W. Heckman appointed “pursuant to Civil Service Police Act of 1941.” Hunter and Railing added to the police pension plan.

14 July 1947- Patrolman S.R.Railing notified “that at the end of his probationary service, Aug. 15, 1947, his services will no longer be required.”

11 August 1947- temporary appointment of Wilbur R. Hancock, patrolman.

13 October 1947- Hancock hired for six-month probationary period.
Siren and flashing light purchased for the police car. Three-man committee of council appointed to investigate additional police.

12 November 1947- Committee recommended no changes; committee disbanded.

13 January 1948- Chief Hunter submitted resignation; council declined to accept it. Hunter, Heckman and Hancock granted $10 per month raise.

10 February 1948- Clarence Sterrett’s salary set at $175 per month.
Police budget for 1948: $8,650 (total budget $36,100).

13 July 1948- Borough Superintendent Paul Noftsker tells council the 1944 Plymouth patrol car “is pretty well shot …the boys are afraid to drive it at high speed …”.

12 October 1948- Purchased new 1948 Stylemaster Chevrolet four-door sedan from H&H Chevrolet for $1,439, less trade-in.

Police budget for 1949: $8,800 (total budget $43,435).

12 April 1949- George Heckman resigned. Council said it “would not want to stand in the way of an employee’s bettering his position.”
Salaries of remaining members of the force increased $10 per month.
Salary schedule adopted: new and inexperienced patrolmen, $170 per month; new and experienced patrolmen, $185 per month.

11 May 1949- Ordinance passed re: police pension fund.

19 September 1949- Patrolman Stacy B. Gunderman dismissed “for conduct unbecoming an officer.

31 January 1950- Reference to “Patrolman McKeever” being insured under police pension plan. No prior reference, no first name..

09 May 1950- Resolution commending all state, City of Philadelphia and local officers who participated in the Gnatz incident, particularly Chief Hunter and Patrolman Ellis J. Mellott. (first reference to Mellott).

10 October 1950- Clarence E. Sterrett resigned because he thought he “ought to have Seniority over the other patrolmen.” Council ordered him to go back to work or submit a written resignation.

30 October 1950- Sterrett’s resignation accepted. Police commission advised to gather candidates for two vacancies.

13 December 1950- Ellis J. Mellott, patrolman, hired. Position offered to Willis K. Hurley.
Letter from borough superintendent suggests extending the police annuity (retirement fund) to all four officers at $75 per month after age 65. Currently $10-12 and only two men are enrolled.

(There was a break in the page-by-page research here – skipped ahead to Borough Council minutes, July 26, 1954 to Dec. 11, 1956, -- first entries of 1955)

09 November 1955- Patrolman Wilbur Hancock resigned effective: Nov. 7.

10 January 1956- Reference to “acting chief of police.” No name and no prior reference.

13 March 1956- Resolution of sympathy for death of Edmund Hunter. Says he started with borough as police chief April 1, 1932.

24 April, 1956- William A. Smith of Halifax hired as patrolman.

08 May 1956- First new reference to “chief of police.” No name.
New Model 150 Chevrolet police car purchased from H&H Chevrolet for $750 with trade-in.

22 May 1956- W.A. Smith named chief of police.
Jason A. Neidig named patrolman.

09 October 1956- W.A. Smith’s resignation not accepted. He was given two weeks’ leave with pay. Council approved letter giving Smith a “free hand in conducting the affairs of the police department as he thinks best for the interest of the community …”

11 October 1956- Burgess Clarence Sterrett resigns.
Patrolman Lloyd McKeever appointed Acting Chief of Police in Smith’s absence.

11 December 1956- Patrolman George W. Heckman resigns.

12 February 1957- Michael A. Lynch of Mercersburg and Ralph D. Morrison hired as patrolmen.
$1,184 in police radio equipment purchased.

18 February 1957- 1957 Ford patrol car purchased for $300 with trade-in of 1956 Chevrolet.

11 June 1957- Police Chief W. A. Smith honorably relieved of his duties by resolution “because of physical disability.” Lloyd McKeever named acting chief.

18 July 1957- Chief’s salary set at $4,000 per year; patrolmen at $250 per month.

10 September 1957- Michael Wassell of York named chief of police, eff, Sept.23.

10 June 1958- Patrolman Lloyd McKeever resigns.

14 December 1958- Patrolman David Stanton KeeFauver hired.

13 January 1959- Reference to complaint letter from patrolmen and police clerks.

30 January1959- 1959 Chevrolet Biscayne 4-door cruiser purchased from H&H Chevrolet for $1,349 with trade-in of 1957 Ford.

12 May 1959- Council agreed to pay legal fees for three officers sued by Jas. Stouffer in Cumberland County Court.

18 May 1959- Each patrolman invited to address council “to air his ‘grievances.’” Council issues formal statement of confidence in the force, advises future complaints be lodged through the burgess.

January 1960- Patrolman KeeFauver salary increased to $3,600.

13 December 1960- Patrolman David Stanton KeeFauver resigns.

(skipped ahead to Council Minutes Jan. 5, 1967 – Dec. 30, 1969 – to October 1967)

14 October, 1967- resolution suspending Police Chief Michael J. Wassell “without compensation for a period of 20 days commencing Oct. 7, 1967 , to Oct. 26, 1967. Three pages of council minutes detail the hearing that led up to this action.

25 October 1967- Wassell requested hearing before civil service commission.

21 November 1967- Wassell was back on the job; filed routine report to council.

20 February 1968- Letter from Chief Wassell requesting retirement, citing: “physical disability.” Accepted by council. Ralph Morrison appointed temporary acting chief of police.

14 April 1968- A citizens’ petition calls for dismissal of Officer (Richard) Angle, one person claiming the officer shot him with mace and threatened him.

21 May 1968- Citizens again present, no charges had been filed but the mayor ordered officers not to use mace except in “extreme emergencies.” Mayor agreed to meet with anyone who had complaints.

15 October 1968- Ordinance 381 establishes a Human Relations Commission

24 October 1968- Wayne Rideout hired as permanent police officer in special meeting

28 October 1968- Wayne Rideout resigns, not knowing he was approved for permanent position Oct. 24. Problem with harassment implied. Human Relation investigation called for

19 November 1968- Ralph Morrison named Chief of Police..

(skipped ahead to Council Minutes 1973 and 1974)

19 February 1974- Chief of Police Ralph Morrison resigns, Officer Nelson Alleman named Acting Chief of Police.

01 July 1974- Police get overtime after 40 hours.

25 July 1974- William Gehres hired as chief of police, salary $13,900.

(skipped ahead to Council Minutes, Jan 1976 to December 1977)

18 January 1977- Reference to acting Police Chief Dick Angle.
Two Dodge Monaco cruisers ordered from Naugle Motors, $10,400 for both with trade-in of two old cars.

21 February 1977- Mayor commends Angle for covering during Chief Gehres’ hospitalization.

15 March 1977- Gehres back on duty.

19 April 1977- Officer Dick Angle commended by First National Bank for investigation of bank incident.
Position approved for assistant chief of police. No one named.

21 August 1977- police pension ordinance amended. Police to get CPR training.

15 November 1977- Chief of Police William Gehres resigns effective Dec. 9. Mayor recommends Michael Lynch as acting chief of police, further recommends upgrading Dick Angle to Inspector Sergeant. Lynch appointment approved.

01 January 1993- Mid-Cumberland Valley Regional Police Department launched with Shippensburg Borough and Shippensburg Township; Shippensburg Police disbanded.
Dennis W. McMaster is chief of MCVPRD

01 January 2001- Shippensburg Police return to service, following dissolution of MCVRPD, under Police Chief Fred Scott.

1970 - Police Department

Ralph D. Morrison - Chief of Police

S. Nelson Allean

Michael A. Lynch

Richard L. Angle - Criminal Investigator

Harold J. Eutzy

Wayne F. Rideout, Sr.

Thomas E. Moore - Parking Meter Checker

Ellis Mellott

Chief E. J. Hunter using a typewriter at his desk.


Chief E.J. Hunter on a street corner in Shippensburg with a group of unidentified men.


Ellis Mellott, Lloyd McKeever, and Chief E. J. Hunter group photo.


Ellis Mellott, Lloyd McKeever, Hancock, and Chief Hunter group photo.


Ellis Mellott


Unknown Police Officer


Officer George Heckman


Police Vehicle (Patty Wagon)


Police Vehicle (Patty Wagon)


Presentation of ‘Officer of the Month’ award to Richard Angle.


Back Row From Left: Chief Ralph Morrison, Tom Moore, Gary Wyrick, Harold Eutzy, Front
Row From Left: Nelson Alleman, Mike Lynch, Dick Angle


Mike Lynch, unknown person and Dick Angle


Dick Angle stands there in the middle and at the far right Chief Ralph Morrison


Mike Lynch (Left) and Dick Angle (right) with an unknown man in the foreground


Patrolman Dick Angle and Patrolman Mike Lynch: One inside police car, the other getting in.


One unknown police officer with an unknown man standing next to some stacked furniture


One unknown police officer standing with three unknown men, two wearing top hats


One unknown police officer with four unknown men


Group of unknown men, women, and children at a New Year’s party


Group of unknown men, women, and children at a party


Photograph of plaque presented to Richard Angle for ‘Officer of the month


Plaque given to Assistant Chief Richard Angle in 1985 by the United States Postal Service


Dorothy Mellott holding a photo of her late husband in uniform


Patrolman Ellis Mellot as a young man after fox hunting, courtesy of his widow, Dorothy



First row to the right, the last three gentleman are Dave Chamberlin, Richard Killinger, Dick Smith and Sgt. Mike Sabol (PSP).

First row to the right is Don Mowery. Second row fourth ones in on the right hand side are Dave Chamberlin and Dick Smith.

Left to right are Don Mower, Jack Mellott, Harold Eutzy, Sgt. Mike Sabol (PSP), Alvin "Ike" Martin, Dick Smith and Richard Killinger.


Judy Ocker broth us this form that her Grandfather Officer George Heckman





Shippensburg Police Department  Phone - 717-532-7361  Fax - 717-532-2313        Last Modified :01/30/12 11:28 PM          Copyright 2008