Chief of Police

Jarrad P. Berkihiser, M.A.

Chief of Police

Lancaster Bureau of Police

The Honorable J. Richard Gray, Mayor of Lancaster swore in Jarrad Berkihiser as Chief of Police on November 6, 2017 to serve on an interim basis due to the retirement of Chief Sadler and Mayor-Elect Danene Sorace taking office in January 2018.  The Lancaster Bureau of Police is a full service police department providing service to the City of Lancaster.  The Bureau is the largest and only urban law enforcement agency in Lancaster County.  The bureau consists of approximately 233 sworn and civilian employees. 

Chief Berkihiser is responsible for the protection of lives and property in the city through the organization and directing of all police functions.  His duties involve the strategic planning of the bureau, directing and coordinating patrol, traffic, juvenile, criminal investigation and related services.  He also oversees the training, assignment and discipline of all members of the Bureau. 

Chief Berkihiser, originally from Womelsdorf, PA, began his career in law enforcement with the United States Air Force Security Police in 1989 until 1993 receiving an honorable discharge.  During his military career Berkihiser served as a nuclear missile security officer at Malmstrom Air Force Base in Great Falls, MT.  He served as an Alarm Response Team member and leader, Fire Team member and leader, and a Flight Security Controller.  Upon returning home to Pennsylvania Berkihiser continued working in the law enforcement/security field by becoming a loss prevention manager for Boscov’s department stores until he was hired by the Lancaster Bureau of Police in May 1994.  Chief Berkihiser is a third generation military service member and a third generation police officer in his family.    

Chief Berkihiser has had the opportunity to work in each division within the Bureau.  He began his career with the Bureau in the Patrol Division in 1994.  He became a member of the Special Emergency Response Team (S.E.R.T.) in 1995 and served on that unit in various roles and leadership positions.  The last position he held was Deputy Commander.  In 1998 until 2002 he served on the Drug Suppression Unit investigating and prosecuting street level narcotics and prostitution cases.  In 2002 Berkihiser was transferred to the Criminal Investigative Division and was a member of the Auto Theft Unit and after several months was transferred to the Violent Crime Unit where he specialized in identifying and investigating pattern violent crimes and homicides. 

2007 Berkihiser was promoted to sergeant and returned to the patrol division as a patrol platoon sergeant.  As a sergeant Berkihiser filled several positions over a five year period including Crime Prevention/Community Policing Sergeant, Press Information Officer, Detective Sergeant – Violent Crimes Unit, and Training Sergeant.  As the training sergeant he was responsible for the overall training of Bureau personnel.  

In 2012 Berkihiser was promoted to Lieutenant and assigned to the Special Investigations Unit of the Investigative Division.  This position involved supervising and managing a unit of detectives charged with investigating child abuse and sexual assault cases while carrying his own caseload of investigations.  The position also required him to help manage homicides and other major cases investigated by the division. 

August of 2014 Berkihiser was promoted to captain and took command of the patrol division, the largest division within the Bureau.  This position includes strategic planning for the division, overseeing the training, discipline and assignment of personnel among the four platoons, patrol services, mounted patrol, K-9 unit, school resource officers, and the selective enforcement unit. 

Berkihiser holds a Bachelor of Arts degree with honors and a concentration in Organizational Leadership in Law Enforcement and a Master of Arts degree in Management with a concentration in Organizational Leadership through American Military University.  He also attended and graduated from the F.B.I. National Academy in 2015 receiving a graduate certificate from the University of Virginia.  Twice during his career Berkihiser received the commendation for Bravery, Legion of Merit, and the Henry J. Kauffman award.  He has also received several other commendations and letters of appreciation from the Bureau, other law enforcement agencies, and the public.  Chief Berkihiser is a proud member of the Bureau and is committed to the profession and the people of Lancaster.  Jarrad is happily married with two daughters and enjoys spending time with his family, doing crossfit, and playing sports.

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