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WHEREAS, the Virginia Capitol Police will observe its 400th anniversary on Sunday, November 18, 2018, in Richmond, Virginia; and
WHEREAS, the Capitol Police originated as the Guard in 1618, formed to protect the governor at the first permanent English settlement at Jamestown; and
WHEREAS, the Guard remained an integral part of the executive and legislative process when the Capitol was moved, first to Williamsburg in 1699 and then to Richmond in 1780; and
WHEREAS, the Public Guard was established by the General Assembly in 1801 to protect public property in Richmond, giving way in 1869 to the Virginia Capitol Police, as it is currently known; and
WHEREAS, the Virginia Capitol Police has grown into a multifaceted, progressive agency with varied responsibilities, including the 24-hour security of the buildings and grounds of the Capitol and other designated state office buildings in the Richmond area; and
WHEREAS, the Virginia Capitol Police is also responsible for criminal and traffic laws and the investigation of crimes occurring on these sites; and
WHEREAS, the Virginia Capitol Police provides numerous services to legislative, executive, and judicial branch agencies; keeps the peace during rallies, demonstrations, civil disturbances and riots; and has concurrent jurisdiction with law-enforcement officers in Richmond and contiguous counties in cases involving the theft or misappropriation of the personal property or any member or employee of the General Assembly; and
WHEREAS, the Virginia Capitol Police provides security and nontraditional police services to the governor; the governor’s family, the lieutenant governor, the attorney general, the Supreme Court justices, the Court of Appeals judges, and the members of the General Assembly; and
WHEREAS, in 2010, the Virginia Capitol Police became one of less than 20 percent of the eligible law-enforcement agencies in the Commonwealth of Virginia to earn accreditation from the Virginia Law Enforcement Professional Standards Commission, a distinguished status that the division proudly continues to maintain; and
WHEREAS, citizens across the Commonwealth of Virginia join in commending the men and women of the Virginia Capitol Police for serving with honor, pride, and distinction for more than four centuries;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize November 18, 2018, as Virginia capitol police day in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.