Elizabeth Police Department History

Established in 1858, the Elizabeth Police Department was small but integral in meeting the needs of the community. The agency was comprised of a “night watch” of three men whom were assigned to each ward to protect and serve. Over 160 years later, the Elizabeth Police Department continues to carry on that very tradition of serving the community and ensuring the quality of life for all of the city’s residents. Located at One Police Plaza in Elizabeth, the Elizabeth Police Department strives to maintain order and public safety with honor, integrity and professionalism. 

The Elizabeth Police Department is one of the largest law enforcement agencies in New Jersey. The department consists of approximately 350 officers and 80 civilian employees that work diligently to manage the thirteen divisions that aid the City of Elizabeth’s six wards. The Elizabeth Police Department is comprised of the following divisions in order to meet the diverse needs of our community:

Divisions: 

•       Patrol

•       Emergency Services

•       Neighborhood Services

•       Community Affairs

•       Narcotics 

•       Investigations/Intelligence

•       Juvenile/Domestic Violence

•       Office of Professional Standards

•       Training 

•       Communications

•       Administration

•       Property

•       Municipal Court

Amongst our uniformed officers, approximately 51% are White, 39% are Hispanic, 9% are Black and 1% are of Asian descent. To add to our diversity, females account for 12% of our law enforcement officers. The Elizabeth Police Department responds to approximately 200,000 calls for service, annually, to maintain the safety of the city’s 129,000 residents, all of who are from diverse ethnicities and cultural backgrounds. The Elizabeth Police Department has always worked tirelessly to build and promote positive interactions within our community. 

In order to prepare for the ever-changing role of police service, we strive to provide our officers with the proper tools and resources to combat crime, preserve life and safeguard property. Our officers attend year-round State of New Jersey mandated trainings and are regularly trained in subject matters such as Use of Force, Biased Based Policing, Opiate Awareness and the appropriate care and management of victims of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault. 

            Our ability and commitment to safeguard our community is unwavering. We are constantly exploring technological advancements in order to best serve the public. One example is our CCTV Monitoring System, consisting of over 100 cameras throughout the city, which has assisted us in the apprehension and conviction of numerous criminals. Our diligence, aptitude, and expertise has led to countless multi-agency investigations alongside our law enforcement partners such as the United States Department of Homeland Security, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Drug Enforcement Administration, New Jersey State Police, Port Authority of NY and NJ, NJ Transit Police and many others. It is our duty to honor and protect our community and the Elizabeth Police Department’s mission: “to proudly create peace of mind amongst our residents and to further develop the spirit of collaboration between the public and the department”.