WARREN COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE
200 SKYLINE VISTA DRIVE, FRONT ROYAL, VIRGINIA 22630
Mark A. Butler, Sheriff
Public Release — Warren County Becomes Certified Crime Prevention Community
On June 15, 2023, the Warren County Sheriff’s Office was officially certified by the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services as the 13th law enforcement agency to receive the prestigious Certified Crime Prevention Community (CCPC) Program designation.
According to Sheriff Mark Butler “this outstanding DCJS program recognizes agencies whose exemplary community policing programs foster the development of community safety initiatives at the local level, in close collaboration with our stakeholders.” The goal of the program is to publicly recognize and certify localities that have implemented a defined set of community safety strategies as part of a comprehensive community safety/crime prevention effort.
The Virginia DCJS described the CCPC Program as being one of the first of its kind in the nation and encourages localities to develop and implement collaborative community safety plans within a flexible framework designed by the New Partnership Commission for Community Safety, pursuant to a 1998 Executive Order.
The program provides an ongoing process by which Warren County can reassess and update its plans to address emerging community safety issues. To obtain this certification, the Warren County Sheriff’s Office had to meet 12 core community safety elements/strategies augmented by a minimum of seven approved optional elements. The program itself is managed and monitored by DCJS.
Sheriff Mark Butler acknowledged this certification has been one of his principal goals since being elected Sheriff in 2019. According to Sheriff Butler “this certification was due to a tremendous amount of hard work by a lot of dedicated professionals in the Sheriff’s Office, with the help and support of our citizenry.”
To put this into context, there are only four policy areas under accreditation, with supporting standards beneath each that must be proven. The CCPC Program has nineteen elements, each having one to three quantifiable goals, and a minimum of three objectives supporting each goal.
Sheriff Butler stated we “began evaluating the entire office to ascertain our strengths and weaknesses. This included ongoing discussions and collaboration with residents, schools, both past and present Community Advisory Council (CAC) members, elected officials, business owners, social services, non-profit senior and youth programs, local media, other law enforcement agencies such as the Virginia State Police, state agencies such as the Office of the Attorney General, and so many more.”
The process for achieving excellence in community policing and public safety began more than three years ago. On May 11, 2023, the Warren County Sheriff’s Office submitted its 146-page application to the Department of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) for an in-depth professional review, followed by its submission to the Criminal Justice Services Board Committee on Training (COT) on June 15, 2023. The final decision was rendered by the Criminal Justice Services Board during their scheduled meeting on June 15th. Sheriff Butler wants to express his sincerest appreciation to Tina Sumpter, DCJS Accreditation Coordinator and Mr. Todd Clingenpeel, VLEPSC Program Manager, for their commitment to professionalism and their assistance during both this process, as well as the pursuit of accreditation.
Sheriff Butler wanted to emphasize that the CCPC Program ensures ongoing and meaningful coordination with our community. The program presents many benefits and incentives to the community at large, including:
- The CCPC Program makes Virginia a national leader in community safety by establishing a benchmark that the County of Warren continually meets in terms of providing for the safety of their citizens. This is something the entire community should be proud of.
- Being a recognized CCPC gives Warren County preference in the state criminal justice grant application process. We have already been very successful in this arena, and this creates even greater opportunities in the future to save our hard-working taxpayers money through focused initiatives.
- The Certified Crime Prevention Community designation can be used as a marketing tool by the county to attract families, tourists, businesses, conference planners, and others interested in finding a safe location in which to live and work.
- The Crime Prevention Community designation can be used to seek premium reductions from insurance companies for policyholders living in Warren County’s certified community. Premium reductions are already available for things such as deadbolt locks and security systems. Our Community Policing Unit (CPU) is essential in developing more safety initiatives that benefit both citizens and business, such as offering risk assessments by our certified Crime Prevention Specialist.
- And lastly, the Certified Crime Prevention Community designation enhances the professionalism of county management and the Sheriff’s Office by showing that the county can meet rigorous standards related to community safety. These standards are difficult to attain, and many agencies fell short where the WCSO achieved success. It is the Sheriff’s unwavering commitment to maintain this designation and improve our services in all areas.
According to Sheriff Butler, it took a focused, total-team effort to achieve both VLEPSC accreditation and the CCPC Program award in the same month, and feels it is truly historic. The prestigious CCPC designation will improve service delivery to the county and will be recertified every three years.
In closing Sheriff Butler wishes to thank our elected officials, the many non-profit organizations and outstanding individuals supporting our mentoring program, other school-based programs, senior programs, substance abuse and mental health initiatives, and youth and public safety programs.
Approved for release by Sheriff Mark Butler on June 15, 2023