Department History

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Research through the Town of Merrimack Annual Reports show that as far back as 1893, the Town of Merrimack had some sort of Law Enforcement in place.

It was in 1893 that the Town of Merrimack actually had a town resident appointed to serve as a Law Enforcer. There were two men named to that post which was titled "Constable and Ballot Clerk". They were Mr. Lewis J. Read and Mr. G.E. Blanchard. They were paid $6.00 each for their services that year.

From 1893 to 1940, there were no "Police Officers", per se. The persons charged with enforcing laws were called "Constables". For most of those years, there were three men who responded when the need arose.

In 1940, the Town of Merrimack began its very first Police Department with its first Police Chief.

The Chiefs of the Merrimack Police Department

1940-1953: Edmund J. O'Leary

1953-1958: Frank R. Flanders

1958-1963: Joseph L. Pynenburg

1963-1966: Frank R. Flanders

1966-1968: John R. Wilders, Jr.

1968-1970: Granville M. Stearns, Jr

1970-1981: John F. Pelletier

1981-2002: Joseph R. Devine

2002-2007: William F. Mulligan

2007 - 2011: Michael R. Milligan

2011 - Present:  Mark E. Doyle

In 1940, under the direction of Chief O'Leary, the Police Department budget was $379.19. There were four Officers, all on a part-time status. During that year, there were a total of 253 calls for service.

In 1953, the Chief indicated that there was a 50% increase in juvenile crime from the previous year. The Chief recommended to the Board of Selectmen that the Department goes to a Full-time status. The budget was $2000.00, and there were 486 calls for service.

In 1958, the Department had increased in size to ten special Officers. The Chief publicly thanked the State Police for their assistance over the past year. The listed salary for the Chief was $1.25 per hour, and for the Officer's, $1.10 per hour.

In 1963, the Department became a full time Department for the first time. There were 2 Full time officers, the Chief and one Patrolman. The budget increased to $16,000.00. The biggest problem facing the Department then was the increase in teenage drinking and teenage males hanging out at local business establishments.

In 1966, The Department hired its first female Officer, Betty Raymond. Her duties were traffic control at the intersection of Route #3, and the Daniel Webster Highway. She also was responsible for Matron Duties, as well as being the probation officer for youth offenders. The Department also, for the first time, went to operating at 24 hours a day.

In 1968, the Chief's budget was $41,000.00. He had three Full time Officers, and eleven special Officers. The Department received 6880 call for service.

In 1970, It was brought out publicly for the first time that Police Officers need to be professionally trained. The need for specialists within the Department was also addressed. The Chief planned to update the equipment with the most current technology. The Department had three patrol cruisers. Also this year, the Department moved from the Town Hall, where it had always traditionally been, to the basement of the white schoolhouse on Church St., now known as the Merrimack Senior Center. 

In 1975, the Department grew to 19 Full time Officers and 15 special Officers, with a $350,000.00 budget.

In 1977, The Department hired its first Full time female officer, Andrea Berg. She was assigned to the juvenile division where she investigated crimes involving juveniles. The Department was now staffed with 22 Full time Officers and 20 special Officers. That year, the Department answered 31,700 calls for service.

In 1980, it was the first year that the budget surpassed the 1 million-dollar mark, with a staff of 24 Full time Officers and 18 special Officers. That year officers issued 1265 summons' to motorists who violated the law.

In 1981, under the newly appointed Chief, the Department responded to 7,812 calls for service. This year, the Department moved from what is now the Merrimack Senior Center, to the New Town Hall complex. This is the first time in the Department's history that a lock-up facility was provided. Prior to this date, all prisoners were either taken to the Nashua Police Department, or to the Hillsborough County Jail in Manchester.

In 1986, the Chief indicated that there had been an increase in all police activity. The Department continued to grow to meet the demand for services. It then had on staff 29 Full time Officers, and eight special Officers. There were 10,649 calls for service.

In 1991, The Department's manpower increased to 32 Full time Officers and 9 special Officers. The budget, for the first time, went above the 2 million-dollar mark. The officer's issued 3687 summonses for motor vehicle violations.

In 1995, the Department's staff remained at 32 Full time Officers and 9 special Officers. The citizens approved $600,000.00 for the purchase of and renovations to a new Police Facility. Preparations were made to move from the Town Hall complex to our new home at 31 Baboosic Lake rd.

April 2, 1996...Moving day. The Merrimack Police Department is currently located at 31 Baboosic Lake Road. We invite you to come and visit us for a tour of a facility that we are extremely proud of.

July 1, 1997…Money is appropriated for the renovation of the "Devereux" side of the new building.

December 1997…Renovations begin. This includes total renovation of the upper level and remodeling of the lower level. This will give our community a public meeting room, additional training facilities for our officers and an Emergency Operations Center for our Municipality.

February 1998…The new "west wing" is completely renovated. This wing holds the Chief's office; Administrative Captain's Office; Community Services Officer; the Chief's secretary; the Emergency Operations Center/Conference Room; the class room; and the Prosecutor's Office.