The Village of Chapin is set to honor the 25th Anniversary of its Police Department this weekend.
Chapin Police Chief Steven Helmich says the all part-time department began due to an initiative by the federal government during the Clinton Administration: “The police department was created in January 1997 by a village ordinance. During that time under the Clinton Administration, the federal government had grants to get more police out on the streets. That was one of the initiatives that the Clinton Administration had was grants for creating police departments in smaller municipalities that did not already have a police department. Chapin took advantage of that grant and created the police department that it didn’t previously have. Morgan County Sheriff’s Deputies and the Sheriff’s Office were kind of the creators of the police department. They helped Chapin get the grant. They helped Chapin do all the myriad of things you have to do to establish a police department.”
Helmich says the Chapin community has always been extremely supportive of its first responders, including the police and fire department. He says that this Saturday, the entire Morgan County community can come to the Chapin American Legion and celebrate the area’s first responders.
Chapin Village Clerk Christina Courier says the event on Saturday running from 1-4PM is open to the public: “We are going to have a meet & greet, open house-style of event. We’re going to have some light refreshments and desserts. At kind of the same time, we are doing award presentations for our officers and other area officers. Come on out October 1st from 1-4PM. At 1PM, we are going to do the awards presentation part, so if you don’t want to come out for that, you can come after and enjoy light refreshments. We are inviting some other agencies so everyone is welcome to come. You can come and meet some of the Chapin trustees, myself of course, our treasurer – a lot of different people will be there so come out and say hello to everyone.”
Helmich says that the 25th Anniversary Celebration was being planned prior to the incident in which he was shot in the line of duty after a pursuit into Brown County. He says the award ceremony isn’t meant to overshadow the celebration, but he wants to honor the partner agencies and officers that helped to save his life.
Previous Chapin officers and Police Chiefs in attendance will also be recognized.
Four officers and seven dispatchers along with Helmich will be honored with ceremonies at 1PM. Helmich is still recovering from the wounds he received during the incident.
The celebration again will be held from 1-4PM at the Chapin American Legion located at 534 Superior Street.