History of the Ogden Police Department
“We, the undersigned citizens of the Township of Ogden, do believe that it is necessary that this Township have Police protection”.
This was the heading of a petition signed by numerous Town residents, and on December 7, 1935, the Ogden Town Board enacted the position of "Chief of Police, Town of Ogden."
The Chief of Police would also serve residents of the Village of Spencerport, and the village residents would help pay his salary. The Chief was also given authority to appoint part-time help, known as “Special Police.”
Charles Ballard was named as Ogden's first Police Chief. On February 2, 1940, the Town Board adopted rules and regulations for the Police Department. It established the Town Supervisor as the Commissioner of Public Safety, and developed an internal affairs function for complaints against the police. It also made the Chief of Police the Town Dog Warden and server of legal papers.
In 1948, the Town Board purchased the first radio police car. This new car was equipped with red lights and a siren. Before this, the members had to use their own cars for patrol work.
On December 7, 1955, The Town Board approved the appointment of Roy J. “Tink” Burley as Special Police Officer for the Town of Ogden. On May 27, 1959, Roy Burley was appointed full time police officer after Chief Ballard passed away.
On February 2, 1965, the Town established the Ogden Police Department under the New York State Civil Service in which Roy Burley was appointed Chief of Police and was certified by the Monroe County Civil Service Law. Roy Burley retired from the police force in December 1968 and served as Ogden Town Justice. He tragically passed away in 1983. “Tink” is still a legend among the Town’s people today.
Thomas Pack served as Chief of Police after Tink Burley retired. In September 1970, Thomas Brownell was appointed Chief, and left the force in March 1973. He was replaced by Russell R. Ruhl who was hired as a full time patrolman for the Ogden Police Department in June 1969. At various times, between Chief Roy Burley’s retirement, and the rotation of Chiefs Thomas Pack, Thomas Brownell and Russell Ruhl, Sergeant Joseph M. Eeckhout acted as Interm-Chief.
In June 1989, Chief Russel Ruhl retired as Chief of Police and was replaced by Merritt Rahn, who retired as a lieutenant from the Rochester Police Department. When Merritt Rahn left to become Chief of the Greece Police Department in 1991, Christian L. Schrank was appointed Chief of Police. Chief Schrank had previously served as Chief of the Brockport Police Department. Chief Schrank retired in July 2004. The town then appointed Douglas Nordquist as Chief of Police. Chief Nordquist had served 30 years with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office and had retired as Chief Deputy.
During the 1960’s and early 1970’s, the Ogden Police Department was made up almost entirely of part-time police officers. In the mid-1970’s, the department started to get away from part-timers, and hired more full time officers. It wasn’t until 1986 that the Department had enough manpower to go to 24 hour coverage. On September 5, 1991, the Ogden Police Department received a Certificate of Accreditation by the State of New York. This Accreditation maintains a strict policy that is under the scrutiny of the state. What once was a training ground for bigger departments, the Ogden Police Department now consists of fully qualified and dedicated personnel.