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History of the Cherryville Police Department

 

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On May 23, 1894 the Town Board condemned a piece of land owned by Cherryville Manufacturing Co. This land, on the west side of the mill, was to be used for building a calaboose. One dollar was to be paid for the land and C.M. Crowder's bid of $7.90 for building the calaboose was accepted. The town paid him $13.45.

The necessary deputies were hired by the town's Marshal to keep order on the day and night of commencement. J. B. Houser was appointed Marshall May 18, 1894.

In 1897 the first calaboose (jail) burned and another, 10 feet by 16 feet, was built. Builders of the new jailhouse were Will Farris and F. S. VanDyke. It was used only for the incarceration of occasional drunks.

In 1911 the Old City Hall, with fire station, was built on Main Street. At this time the jail was in the basement. On January 16, 1926 Albert L. Painter was killed in the line of duty.

In 1955 the present City Hall was built. It housed city offices, police department, jail, courtroom and fire department. In 1966, under the N. C. Court Reform Act, the jail was moved to the County Seat in Gastonia.

The police department remained here until a building and tract of land was purchased from the Rutherford Electric Association. J. Ralph Beam, Jr. was serving as mayor. The building was remodeled to provide adequate and updated facilities for the department. At present there are 15 officers.

Under the Crime Prevention Program new programs were implemented. In 1992 the Community Watch Program was re-organized by Jerry L. Dover. In August, 1993 Sgt. Dover also began the Cherryville Police Cadet Drill Team. Participants are ages 6 through 12. December 6, 1993 the Police Canine Program was organized with Kevin McSwain in charge. Keno, the drug dog, was acquired. A Bicycle Patrol was also organized with specially trained officers that work as regular patrol officers, but also ride bikes on patrol for special events. Matt Mauney serves in that capacity at the present time (May,1997).