GPD Celebrates 50 Years

The Gaithersburg Police Department celebrated its 50-year-anniversary on April 1.

On April 1, 1963, a resolution was signed by then Mayor Merton F. Duvall. Chief David Marstiller was the city’s first Chief of Police, although there are references to a “Town Marshall” in the minutes of Town Council Meetings prior to 1963. The town budget for Fiscal Year 1964 included “police protection” salaries for the solitary officer amounting to $4,000, and equipment purchases of $500.

The department has grown from an authorized strength of three sworn officers and one civilian clerk in the early 1970s, when the city’s population was 7,000, to its current authorized strength of 57 sworn officers and 15 civilians. Gaithersburg’s population now stands at just over 64,000, and the proposed operating budget for the Police Department in Fiscal Year 2014 is approximately $9.2 million.

“Over the last half century, the department has seen many changes, including increased strength of officers, technological advancement and training, and redesigns of the police cruisers and uniforms; however, our mission has not changed. We remain committed to our core values of service, integrity and respect, continuing to enhance public safety and add to the quality of life for all Gaithersburg residents,” said Chief Mark Sroka.

To commemorate this occasion, the department created an anniversary badge to serve as a visual reminder of our commitment to public safety. Wearing the anniversary badge is voluntary this year. All officers will resume wearing their regular duty badges in 2014.

For more information about the Gaithersburg Police Department, visit or call 301.258.6400.

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