Hospital Police Association of California
Organized in 1980 in accordance with the start of State Employees Collective Bargaining under Governor Jerry Brown, our association represents the uniformed police officers employed by the Department of Developmental Services and the Department of Mental Health.
Who Are the Hospital Police Officers?
In 1974, the Security Officers employed by the Department of Mental Hygiene and assigned to work at the then 11 State Hospitals were re-classified to that of Hospital Police Officers. In 1982 the Department of Developmental Services was created and their facilities were designated as Developmental Centers. These police officers received their police authority under the California Penal Code Section 830.4. This section has since been modified and is now 830.38 P.C.
The Primary function of the Department of Mental Health Police Officers is the safety and protection of the mentally ill and/or criminally insane patients who are under the care of the state hospitals, the staff employed at their facilities and the community around these facilities. Hospital Police also provide the primary law enforcement duties at these facilities including the investigation of criminal activity arising in and around their facilities and making the necessary felony/misdemeanor arrests of perpetrators who have committed these offenses. The enforcement of all city, county, state and federal laws applicable at their facilities; enforcement of California Vehicle Code Laws; Fish & Game Laws; making traffic stops in accordance with the California Vehicle Code; issuing moving/parking citations to gain compliance with these laws (and in most cases, the use of radar is used in accordance with the law on these facilities as well); respond to burglar/hold-up alarms; first responders for bomb threats; response and enforcement of reports of domestic violence occurring on their facilities; serving court subpoenas and arrest warrants; serving state personnel job action papers; transportation of criminally committed patients to and from court, medical appearances, appointments in the community and between facilities; vehicular patrol in marked police vehicles; provide assistance to the local, state, federal law enforcement agencies; etc..
The primary function of the Department of Developmental Services Police Officers is the same as those in the Department of Mental Health, with the exception that the primary persons protected in these facilities are developmentally (mentally and often physically) challenged. Therefore, these police officers routinely have less actual "custodial" roles at these facilities and are there primarily to provide general uniformed law enforcement duties like their counterparts in mental health.
There are approximately 270 police officers employed in the Department of Mental Health working at: ATASCADERO, COALINGA, METROPOLITAN, NAPA and PATTON State Hospitals.
There are approximately 220 police officers employed in the Department of Developmental Services working at AGNEWS, FAIRVIEW, LANTERMAN, PORTERVILLE, SONOMA, SIERRA VISTA and CANYON SPRINGS Development Centers.
Hospital Police Association of California (HPAC)
*Protecting those who protect you.*
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