Chief of Police, Adam Mefford, Dealing With the Global Pandemic
Adam Mefford is used to working under pressure as the Chief of Police. However, due to the global pandemic his normal stresses have increased dramatically.
Mefford has helped his agency create an effective local response, including employing social distancing when responding to calls, staggering civilian shifts and implementing an extensive sanitation process for squad cars.
Early Life and Education
Nelda Derrick Mefford of Columbia passed away peacefully May 29, 2014 at Providence Hospital with her loving family by her side. She was 81. Funeral services will be held 2:00 pm Sunday June 1 at Asbury Memorial United Methodist Church with burial at Greenlawn Memorial Park following. Thompson Funeral Home will assist the family during this difficult time.
Mefford has been given the task of overseeing Jacksonville’s police department during a pandemic crisis. Law enforcement officers already face high risks on a daily basis; adding another global crisis only heightens stress levels further.
He and other school administrators have initiated changes at Garrison to reduce its punitiveness. No longer calling police for every issue, children placed into seclusion rooms no longer get arrested upon being put there but instead stay at the police station until either their parents pick them up or an officer takes them home.
Adam Mefford has led law enforcement agencies through an international pandemic with his Jacksonville agency. Many officers were caught off-guard by its magnitude; therefore, early strategies such as social distancing, staggered civilian shifts and rigorous sanitation processes for squad cars as well as equipping officers with “COVID kits” have proven crucial for survival.
Mefford not only serves his community, but is also an instructor at Illinois College, sharing insights from his professional career with students in its criminal justice program. As chief of police during a global emergency situation, Mefford plans to keep teaching and gain more firsthand experience dealing with disaster response situations.
Mike Spatola had little trouble negotiating the treacherous track surface to quickly take a straightaway lead over second-starting Jason Jaggers, who eventually slowed and forced a lap-seven caution flag.
Achievement and Honors
Mefford has twice won both the Southland Conference football scholar-athlete award and NSU’s Charlie Tolar Football Scholarship, named in memory of an All-American fullback. Additionally, he was honored as co-MVP in baseball at his IC campus as well as earning one of its Top 10 lifetime leader spots for batting average, hits, total bases, and runs batted in.
Mefford recently received the FOP Meritorious Service Award with five colleagues from various agencies for collaborating to recover stolen property and drugs worth over $75,000 as well as make arrests during a joint investigation that resulted in seizures of illicit items valued at more than $75,000. Mefford credits this incident as being an outstanding example of law enforcement working together cooperatively across agencies.
Mefford and his wife Olivia have hosted 12 foreign exchange students at their home and have also volunteered with the Dream Center Foundation; Mefford even chaired mother’s volleyball.
Adam Mefford shares his extensive law enforcement knowledge as an instructor at Illinois College, teaching courses such as criminal psychology. Additionally, he led Jacksonville Police through a global crisis situation.
Mefford suggests many agencies were caught off-guard by how rapidly the pandemic escalated and by operating in such an unsafe environment. He points to early strategies like social distancing when responding to calls, staggering civilian shifts and rigorous sanitation processes for squad cars as key contributors to JPD’s success in combatting this outbreak.
Mefford, who is married with two children, volunteers as a chaplain for the Jacksonville police department alongside his partner Bradish. Together they offer support to officers and their families as they manage the stress associated with law enforcement work.
Mefford may not be a multi-millionaire, but he remains financially secure. He and his wife own their home, as well as hosting international exchange students – 12 in total over time. Mefford lives in Jacksonville’s small-town environment and wants to maintain its close-knit feel by improving community policing; plans include sending officers on foot patrol to better know their neighborhoods – which he plans to launch this year.