[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Council of the Town of Smithfield 9-13-1955; as amended 3-14-1972; 1-23-1973; 7-10-1973; 9-1-1973; 10-9-1973; 4-9-1974 (Ch. 17, Art. II, of the 1985 Code of Ordinances). Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
The Town Council shall, after receiving the recommendation of the professional police board, appoint such new officers to fill vacancies in the permanent Police Department of the Town as shall from time to time arise. Said Town Council shall also thereafter upon recommendation of the Professional Police Board appoint such numbers of other police constables as in their discretion and judgment may be proper and necessary to the maintenance of good order and prevention of crime within the limits of the Town, upon the following terms and conditions however:
That any person so wishing to be a police constable shall in writing make application to the Police Chief. All applications shall be presented and maintained by the Chief of Police within the Town Police Station;
That upon his appointment as such constable the Town Clerk shall forthwith issue to said duly appointed police constable his commission under the Seal of the Town and a regulation constable's badge containing a number which shall correspond with the number given by the Town Clerk to the constable and which number shall be inserted on the commission; and
That upon the suspension or revocation of the commission to be a police constable, said person shall forthwith deliver to the Town Clerk his badge of office.
The Chief of Police shall report at the office of the Police Department in the Town Hall each day at 9:00 a.m. and shall be subject to calls at all times during every day and night.
It shall be the duty of the Chief of Police to exercise a general superintendence and oversight of the maintenance and operation of all Town equipment used by the police force.
The Chief of Police or his designee shall be a prosecuting officer under all the ordinances of this Town; also a complainant under Section 26 of Chapter 347 of the General Laws of 1909, and all acts in amendment of, and in addition to either of the same.
No person shall be eligible to the office of police constable unless he is a qualified elector of this Town; neither shall any person be eligible to the office who cannot read and write the English language.
It shall be the duty of the Chief of Police to exercise a general superintendence and oversight of all police constables in their official capacity; to have authority to direct any police constable to any place; and to perform such services as may, in his judgment, be necessary to promote good order, to prevent crime and generally to protect the persons and property of the citizens of this Town.
Police constables shall at all times be vigilant in the maintenance of good order, the protection of persons and property and the suppression and prevention of crime, shall take cognizance of all violations of the Town ordinances and the General Statutes and make such arrests as may be necessary and shall report every arrest with its disposition to the Chief of Police.
Police constables shall perform their duties in such places as the nature of their office may warrant, under the direction of the Chief of Police, and for such service certified to by the Chief of Police shall receive such compensation as is provided for police officers for similar duty, but in no event less than a minimum of $20 for a maximum of four hours of duty and $5 per hour for each hour in excess of four hours, and in addition to such compensation shall receive all such fees for service of warrants, attendance at court, commitment, etc., as are allowed by law.
Editor's Note: State law reference - Fees of constables, G.L. 1956, § 9-29-9.
All police constables shall be subject to and observe the rules and regulations prescribed by the Town Council and shall be subject to the rules and regulations of the permanent Police Department except with regard to suspension and removal from office of constables, which shall be governed by the Town's personnel regulations.
Every police constable shall report to the Chief of Police all the facts required relative to any case or offense as to which said police constable shall take action.
Every police constable, in his conduct and deportment, must be quiet, civil and orderly. In the performance of his duty he must maintain decorum and attention, command of temper, pertinence and discretion. He must at all times refrain from harsh, violent, coarse, profane and insolent language, and at the same time act with firmness and energy. He must not drink any kind of alcoholic beverage while on duty, or frequent any place where strong drink is sold, except in the immediate execution of his duty.
No police constable shall withdraw any complaint or compound or settle any offense against any person without permission from the Chief of Police.
Whenever any police constable shall arrest any person, said person shall be dealt with as humanely as possible and all harshness and severity shall be avoided, except such as may be necessary to secure and detain such person in safe custody.
Editor's Note: State law reference - Restraint and force used in arrest, G.L. 1956, § 12-7-8 et seq.
The Chief of Police shall have power to suspend any police constable for violation of this chapter or any part thereof, pending an investigation by the Town Council.
When any police constable shall have been suspended by the Chief of Police, said police constable shall not receive compensation for any services rendered during such time of suspension.
Police constables not members of the permanent police force shall remain in office during the pleasure of the Town Council.