After 36 years with the Waterville Police Department, Chief Joseph Massey will retire at the end of November. His retirement prompted an overarching review of the police department’s operations, which the city council recently unanimously voted in favor of.
Under Massey, the police department has launched several initiatives. Improvements include a new police station, canine unit, and Operation HOPE, a program that helps people get treatment for opioid addiction.
In an interview with the Morning Sentinel, City Manager Steve Daly said, “It will be something [Massey] can leave behind as part of his legacy in Waterville.”
The police department has recognized a need to reorganize its operations going forward, citing that the department’s knowledge is intertwined with Massey’s leadership. With the help of a third-party assessment, the department will begin to address internal weaknesses within the system.
The review will be conducted by the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) which the City Council has contracted for $40,000. The IACP is a non-profit based in Virginia and carries the title of being the largest professional police network in the world. The IACP will deploy 3 specialists to assess the Waterville Police Department’s operations.
Daly added that there is slight pressure to begin the review quickly. The timing of this review comes at an awkward time as the Waterville Police Department is currently short-staffed. Officers have been working overtime to make up for the productivity deficit. Massey said that he had hoped that the department would have been in a more stable position for the assessment.
Regardless, the review is expected to begin shortly. The police department can expect a blueprint of its future operations to begin to take shape, and the residents of Waterville can hope for a more efficient police force.
~ Vivian Nguyen `25