Department History

1937 Martinsville Police Department Staff PhotoThe First 100 Years

The history of the first 100 years of the Martinsville Police Department was written by Officer J.S. Witherow in 1976. It covers the history of the department from its founding in 1885 to the 1970s.

Read about the First 100 years of the Police Department (PDF).

Department History Facts

  • The Department did not assign permanent badge numbers until 1983. The first badge number, 101, was issued to Wayne Hampton, who was the longest-serving member of the department at the time.
  • Badge 102 was issued to Anne Draper, who was MPD's first female officer, sworn in in 1973.
  • Jewel Hagwood, 104, was the department's first African American officer, sworn in in 1963.
  • The two longest-serving officers are both still serving. Captain Jim Minter has served for 39 years. Chief Eddie Cassady has served for 37.
  • Coretha Gravely, the department's first African American female officer is also still serving, with 31 years of service.
  • George Carter is the only Martinsville officer to have been killed in the line of duty. Carter was killed in the line of duty, June 14, 1919 in the area of the present day uptown spur of the Dick & Willie Trail. He was investigating gambling activity in the area when he was attacked and killed.
  • The department purchased its first motorized patrol vehicle in 1922 - a Dodge Touring Car.
  • The department first purchased two-way radios in 1944.
  • In 1900, MPD officers were paid $30 per month or $360 annually. In 2000, starting pay was about $25,000 annually.

Chiefs of Police Over Time

Chief of PoliceAppointment / Term
J. Moss SmithSworn in in 1897
E.L. TurnerAround 1915
H.W. Stultz1927 to 1956 (unverified)
Floyd Bowman1956 to 1959
Emory Bolejack1959 to 1971
Jesse Williams1971 to 1971
Frank Gard1971 to 1980
Terry Roop1980 to 1996
Dave Edwards1996 to 1999
Mike Rogers1999 to 2014
Sean Dunn2014 to 2017
Eddie Cassady2017 to Present