From Michael T. Lazor, Chief of Police
One of the most familiar faces in the Willowick Police Department for the past 27 years has been Sgt. Carol Ice. She will be leaving in August for vacation which will roll into her retirement in October. She came to Willowick in 1989 after having worked on the Lake County Narcotics Agency. Carol was promoted to sergeant in 2011 and took on added responsibilities with general public relations, the Intoxilyzer maintenance and school guards.
Although we have a new officer assigned with the DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) program, it is Carol Ice who was associated with the DARE program in Willowick since 1992. For 24 years, she has devoted her time to teaching the DARE curriculum to 5th students at Royalview and St. Mary Magdalene. Many of the students she taught are now adults. The common denominator has been her passion to keep our kids safe and away from drugs. She found a way to reach them. This was evidenced by the happy smiles seen on the faces of the children at each graduation ceremony.
As she begins this new path, we all want to thank her for her years of service to the Department and the City and wish her well.
About the Willowick Police Department
Willoughby-on-the-Lake became the Village of Willowick in 1923 with a population of approximately 300 people. John J. Polly is considered the first Chief Constable / Chief of Police and worked for the village in this capacity from around 1920 until 1941. Official police protection was begun in 1924. Polly’s successor was Robert T. Collins, who was hired in 1936. Collins was Chief of Police from 1941 until his retirement in 1973. He was Police Chief when Willowick became a City in 1956 and throughout Willowick’s greatest period of growth from 1946 to 1959. The police department also began to expand in the late 1940’s and early 1950’s to meet the new demands of expansion. Chief Collins is considered, by many, to be the “Father” of today’s police department.
In 1934, the first police station was in a 3 story house at the intersection of Lakeshore Blvd. and Vine St. and part of the Village Hall. In 1948, a building was constructed at 31230 Vine St. which housed the City Hall, Police and Fire Depts. The modernization of the Police Department occurred when it moved to its current location at the Municipal Safety Center at 30435 Lakeshore Blvd. in December of 1976.
We currently are allotted a complement of 25 full time sworn officers. This includes the Chief of Police, 2 Lieutenants, 4 Sergeants, 2 Detectives and 16 patrol officers. One of our patrol officers is designated as a School Resource Officer and works in the schools under a COPS in School grant. We also have a civilian staff of 10 dispatchers. Two part time officers assist the department with court and jail related duties. A victim assistance program was begun in 2004 through a grant from the State of Ohio and 2 part time advocates were hired as a result.
The Willowick Police Department is involved in a number of public relation programs. Two officers teach DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) in the schools.
FIRST WILLOWICK K9
S.O.W. 2006 – E.O.W. 2014
We offer seat belt instruction to 3rd graders, do child safety seat instructions for parents, conduct Halloween safety talks giving away reflective candy bags, provide free gun locks to residents, and annually host the Officer Phil Safety program in the schools.
Willowick is part of a 6 city ERT (Emergency Response Team), comprised of SWAT officers and Crisis Negotiators who respond to emergency situations on a mutual aid basis. This unit was begun in Willowick in 1987.
The Police Department has a computer network that utilizes a CAD (Computer Aided Dispatch system that is provided by Sundance Systems Inc.) and a RMS (Records Management System). We will soon have MDTs (Mobile Data Terminals) in each police vehicle. These MDT computers will tie into the main network. We are also in the process of going on-line with a Statewide information sharing system that will eventually tie us in with police agencies throughout the entire State of Ohio.