MOUNT AIRY, Md. - After the hiring of the first ever police chief and officers for the Town of Mount Airy, they're now equipped to protect and serve as the town's first ever police department.
It has been nearly a year in the making. The Mount Airy Police Department has officially hit the streets.
Maryland State Police have patrolled these streets in years prior, but Oct. 1 marked their first day of service.
"This is where it all starts to come together and to start functioning as a police department,” said Chief Doug Reitz, Mt. Airy Police Department.
With seven police officers, including a new police chief, one prospective officer in the academy and two more transferring from other agencies, the department will grow to a total of 10 within the force.
“It is great, because this is where you start to see everything coming together,” continued Chief Reitz. “You see the fruits of your, labor so to speak”
The department also moved into a new police headquarters, 205 Center Street, located right off Main Street.
"The property, evidence room, and you have the interview rooms and detention areas that you need to have access to,” continued Chief Reitz. “There is so many things that need to go into building a police station."
Now, as they start to patrol the town, residents get to meet the new officers who will protect their community.
“Essentially, you are doubling the number of police officers you have, but you are greatly improving the quality of service that you are improving to those citizens,” said Cpl. Russell Halterman, Mt. Airy Police Department.
The department hopes to continue to expand not only the force but the relationships in the community.
Five Maryland State Police Troopers served in the town through the Resident Trooper program.