Shepherdstown cops get new digs

May 30, 1997


Staff Writer, Charles Town

SHEPHERDSTOWN, W.Va. - When Shepherdstown Police Chief Cecil Arnold looks over his new headquarters, he sees space for his officers to have their own desks and counter space to analyze evidence.

Since the 1940s, the police department had been in Town Hall on King Street.

But as other town offices grew, the police department's office space shrank. In recent years the department's offices have been in the back room.

The room had once housed the police department's two jail cells and the space was too cramped for the officers to work efficiently, Arnold said.


Last Thursday, the officers moved into the building next to Town Hall on King Street.

As they worked on the move, Arnold said they got a chance to see how much the community cares about the police department.

A neighboring restaurant fixed lunch and sent the food over. Shepherd College donated extra desks and office furniture. A local businessman donated a fax machine.

"You get a jaundiced viewpoint because so many times you see people at their worst. But it's a great community and they're showing a lot of support," Arnold said.

A group of teenage boys who hang out on the corner volunteered to paint the new headquarters.

Arnold said he plans to take them up on their offer after getting the necessary approval from the historic and planning commissions and the building's owner.

The new police headquarters may not be the fanciest office space in town.

But Arnold said the three officers now have their own desks and there is counter space to work on evidence analysis and storage.

Some items still seem oddly out of place as the officers settle into their new digs. A large metal desks blocks the hallway to the chief's office.

"We still have to find nooks for everything," he said.

Shepherdstown Mayor Vince Parmesano said town officials will be able to move shelves and other items from the town council chambers to the former police headquarters.

The move will open more space for the audience at council meetings, he said.

"In the past they got jammed into an office space without room to move around in," Parmesano said. "We'll have room to operate a little more graciously."

The Herald-Mail Articles