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A Day in the Life of a small town Police Chief

Posted on Friday, January 18, 2013 at 7:47 am

Elsberry Police Chief Robert Bodley

Being the Chief of Police for a small community like Elsberry is nothing like the shows many residents may see on T.V. They don’t have a team of former CIA agents tracking down national terrorists. They don’t have special gadgets that can reconstruct a person’s entire face from a small bone fragment. In fact, for small town officers, old school policing with old technology and good old fashion investigating is a way of life.

“I, like many small town chiefs, wear many hats,” said Elsberry Police Chief Robert Bodley. “We don’t have one person who does this or another person who does that. We don’t have a lot of things that trust me, would be a wonderful thing to have.”

According to Bodley, the most important part of working for a small town law enforcement agency is being able to work as a team with in the community and for the community.

“I think the biggest difference between being a small town chief and a larger municipality is we half to do everything,” said Bodley. “Not only do I have to do the duties of a police chief, such as paper work for the federal government, to the state and supervise, I also have to do the work of a records clerk, which includes getting reports to the insurance companies, to the Department of Revenue and the Highway Patrol.”

Bodley went on to say he also has the responsibilities of an evidence technician by keeping track of the evidence and making sure it’s logged, cataloged and put away. Even further, Bodley explained he also has the responsibilities of a patrol officer in doing routine patrol and traffic stops.

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