Hernando Police Award

From left, Hernando Police Department Operations Division Lt. John Cotter and Chief Scott Worsham display the certificate that signifies the department as an accredited agency with the Mississippi Law Enforcement Accreditation Commission. Hernando was given a four-year accreditation award.

The Hernando Police Department has learned it has achieved four-year accreditation by the Mississippi Law Enforcement Accreditation Commission, or MSLEAC. 

Police Chief Scott Worsham announced in a news release the Hernando department had become the 28th department in Mississippi to be named an accredited agency.

“With over 350 law enforcement agencies in the state of Mississippi, this accreditation’s difficult to attain and represents the highest standards in Mississippi law enforcement,” Worsham said. “To obtain this distinction, agencies must comply with 327 standards set forth by the Commission.”

The approval for Hernando was a unanimous decision of the MSLEAC commissioners at its Feb. 12 meeting, the letter announcing the accreditation from the commission read. Worsham was informed of the award on May 15.

“Accreditation helps to increase our ability to prevent and control crime through more effective and efficient delivery of law enforcement services to our community,” Worsham said. “Accreditation also provides greater accountability within the Agency, increased community advocacy, strengthens crime prevention and control capabilities, formalizes procedures, as well as minimize liability risks and costs.”

MSLEAC has been in existence since 2004, implemented in conjunction with the state Chiefs’ Association, Sheriffs’ Association, and the state Department of Public Safety. Its purpose is to establish professional standards for law enforcement agencies.

Among the benefits of being accredited, according to MSLEAC, are controlled liability insurance costs; stronger defense against lawsuits and citizen complaints; greater accountability within the agency; staunch support from government officials; and increased community advocacy.