UW Police

About Us

Welcome to the University of Washington Police Department (UWPD). Founded in 1902, the UWPD grew from a security force into a police department in the early 1970s. Our department has been an internationally accredited CALEA agency since 2005, and we hold ourselves to the highest standards and follow best practices for law enforcement operations. As a fully commissioned law enforcement agency, we maintain the same responsibilities and authority as other municipal departments in the state of Washington. We are proud of our commitment to the University of Washington to “Safeguard the Academic Community with P.R.I.D.E.”

The University of Washington Police Department (UWPD) serves and protects the students, staff, faculty and all people and property within the jurisdiction of our community. See the Brief History of the UWPD for more information about our past.

Commissioned law enforcement officers are on duty 24 hours a day, every day of the year. The UWPD has the exclusive responsibility to act upon law-enforcement matters and perform police functions for the Seattle campus of the University of Washington. Officers investigate all crimes and enforce federal, state and local laws as well as Washington Administrative Code (WAC) rules within the University of Washington’s jurisdiction.

All sworn university peace officers have successfully completed training at the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission Academy or equivalent training recognized by the commission. Many UWPD officers hold either an associate or a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice, sociology, psychology, community relations or other public service-related fields. In addition to this extensive training, the officers also attend additional functional training throughout the year.

 DIVISIONS | MISSION & VISIONJURISDICTION | HISTORY

 

Message from Chief Vinson

Greater together, to make a difference

On behalf of the University of Washington Police Department (UWPD), I would like to take this opportunity to share information on how we are working to be closer to, engaging with, training for, and distinctly of our community.

Our focus remains one of collaboration within our community, and we are especially proud to have partnered with the Student Safety Advisory Board in the first annual Student Safety Awareness Week. Our ongoing collaboration with the ASUW led Student Safety Advisory Board and the Campus Safety Advisory Committee has been invaluable in guiding the mission to achieve our shared vision. We continue these efforts, to provide an open platform for all our community members to voice their perspectives and would encourage you to attend and engage with us. I am also proud to have served on two statewide legislative task forces: one focusing on campus sexual violence prevention and the second one on sexual assault rape kit testing.

Training our community to respond in the event of sudden violence was a significant focus over the last year, in response to community request. We have supplemented the in-person Active Shooter Preparedness training with a video developed specifically for our community. With property theft being one of our arch nemesis, we continue to promote the Love Your Stuff educational campaign, in collaboration with partners across the UW. Checkout the video, details on available safety services, and other crime prevention tips at our web: www.police.uw.edu

The UWPD is committed to safety and security in our inclusive and diverse community for all as they continue their educational journey. As your police department, are committed to the idea of an open society where education and the open exchange of opinions is paramount for every student, regardless of their race, creed, gender, sexual orientation or immigration status. Simply put, it is our differences that make our community stronger.

Find more information on public safety news, trends and safety at these links:

 

As always, if you have questions or concerns, please contact me at 206.543.0521, by email at vinso1jn@uw.edu, or even Twitter @UW_PoliceChief. Remember, as members of the university community, you are our most valuable resource in preventing and deterring crime. If you see something, say something and don’t hesitate to call 911.

Thank you for your continued partnership in keeping us all safe as we work, study and live at the University of Washington. We are safer when we work together.

John N. Vinson, Ph.D.

Chief of Police
Assistant Vice President for Student Life