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Miami-Dade Police Department

The Miami-Dade Police Department (MDPD), formerly known as the Metro-Dade Police Department (1981–1997), Dade County Public Safety Department (1957–1981) and the Dade County Sheriff's Office (1836–1957) is a Full Service County Police Department serving Miami-Dade County. The MDPD has approximately 4,700 employees, making it the largest police department in the southeastern United States.[1] The Department is still often referred by its former name, the Metro-Dade Police or simply Metro. Miami-Dade Police officers are easily identified by their taupe/brown colored uniforms. Miami-Dade Police vehicles are identified by their green and white livery. MDPD officers carry silver badges, while officers with the ranks of sergeant and above carry gold badges.

Miami-Dade Police Department
Patch of the Miami-Dade Police Department.png
Seal of Miami-Dade County, Florida.png
Seal of Miami-Dade County
Badge of the Miami-Dade Police Department.png
Badge of a Miami-Dade Police Department officer
Flag of Miami-Dade County, Florida.png
Flag of Miami-Dade County
Common nameMiami-Dade P.D.
Agency overview
Jurisdictional structure
Operations jurisdictionMiami-Dade, Florida, U.S.
Size2,431 sq mi (6,300 km2)
General nature
  • Local civilian agency
HeadquartersDoral, Florida

OfficersApproximately 3,000
Unsworn membersApproximately 1,700
Agency executive
  • Juan J. Perez, Director of Police

The MDPD operates out of eight district stations throughout Miami-Dade County and several specialized bureaus. The MDPD is internationally accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, as well as at the state level by the Florida Commission for Law Enforcement Accreditation. The current director of the department is Juan J. Perez,[2] who succeeded J.D. Patterson. The department's headquarters are located in Doral, Florida.[3]


An MDPD Ford Crown Victoria Police Interceptor parked outside Hard Rock Stadium in the former livery.
An MDPD Ford Crown Victoria Police Interceptor in the former livery design.

The Dade County Sheriff's Office was created in 1836 to serve the newly created County of Dade, which originally consisted of the area comprising the present-day counties of Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach and Martin. In the early years, the entire area was policed by as few as three deputies on horseback, and Dade's sheriffs were appointed by the governor. In 1899, the office of the sheriff became an elected position. By 1915, the jurisdiction area had been reduced to its present size of approximately 2,139 square miles.[4]

In 1957, the metropolitan form of government was established, and the Dade County Sheriff's Office was subsequently renamed the Public Safety Department. The Public Safety Department's organizational structure, as determined by the metropolitan charter, included responsibility for police and fire protection, the jail and stockade, civil defense, animal control, and motor vehicle inspection. In 1960, the Public Safety Department also assumed responsibility for police operations at the Port of Miami and Miami International Airport.[4] By 1966, the Public Safety Department had approximately 850 sworn officers in its ranks. That year a long-standing controversy over the selection/election procedure for choosing a county sheriff was resolved by voter mandate. Subsequently, non-elected sheriffs were appointed by the county manager as "Director of the Public Safety Department and Sheriff of Metropolitan Dade County."

In 1973, the responsibility for running the county's jails was transferred to the newly created Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. By that year, the Public Safety Department had also been divested of all other non-police responsibilities in order to concentrate entirely on law enforcement services. In July 1981, the Public Safety Department was renamed the Metro-Dade Police Department. In September 1997, voters decided to change the jurisdiction's name to Miami-Dade County. In December of the same year, the Metro-Dade Police Department was renamed the Miami-Dade Police Department.[4]

On September 13, 2007 four Miami-Dade Police Department officers were shot by a suspect with an AK-47, resulting in the death of one officer, Jose Somohano. Another officer suffered a serious leg injury. The suspect, Shawn Sherwin Labeet, fled the scene but was found in an apartment complex later that day. He was cornered in a poolhouse bathroom by members of Miami-Dade Police Special Response Team (equivalent to SWAT), and was shot and killed when he refused to drop a pistol he was holding.

On the morning of Thursday, January 20, 2011, two Miami-Dade Police officers were shot and killed by a homicide suspect, Johnny Sims. According to Miami-Dade Police Director James Loftus, the MDPD fugitive warrant team were assisting the U.S. Marshals Service in the city of Miami in apprehending the suspect, for whom a murder warrant had been issued. Police arrived at the suspect's mother's house and made contact with a member of the family, when the suspect surprised police by opening fire. Detective Roger Castillo, a 21-year veteran, was shot in the head and died at the scene, and Detective Amanda Haworth, a 23-year veteran, was shot several times and taken to Jackson Memorial Hospital's Ryder Trauma Center in grave condition. She underwent emergency surgery there, but died shortly thereafter. The suspect, Sims, was shot and killed by another detective at the scene.

The standard issue weapon is the 9mm Glock 17. Prior to the Glock becoming standard issue officers could choose their own weapon off a list and the list included but was not limited to Beretta 92, Glock 17, H&K USP, or a SIG Sauer P226.


MDPD provides law enforcement services to eight district stations throughout Miami-Dade County:[5]

  1. Northwest District Station (Miami Lakes)
  2. Northside District Station (West Little River)
  3. Midwest District Station (Doral)
  4. South District Station (Cutler Ridge)
  5. Kendall District Station (Kendall)
  6. Intracoastal District Station (North Miami Beach)
  7. Airport District Station (Miami International Airport, Florida)
  8. West District Station (The Hammocks)

Contracted municipalities


Breakdown of the makeup of the rank and file of MDPD:

  • Male: 75.58%
  • Female: 24.42%
  • White: 20.02%
  • Hispanic: 58.11%
  • African-American/Black: 20.58%
  • Other: 1.29%

Ranks and insigniaEdit

Title Insignia
Deputy Director
Assistant Director
Deputy Chief or Division Chief
Bureau Commander
Police Officer

All rank insignia are worn on the collars of the shirt, except for sergeant, which is worn on each sleeve, below the department patch.

Specialized unitsEdit

  • Arson Unit
  • Auto Theft Unit
  • Aviation Unit
  • Bomb Squad
  • Citizens Volunteer Program
  • Communications Bureau
  • Forensic Services Bureau
  • Crime Stoppers – (305) 471-TIPS
  • Court Services Bureau
  • Drug Abuse Resistance Education
  • Economic Crimes Bureau
  • Warrants Bureau (assists US Marshal Service)
  • General Investigations Unit (G.I.U.)
  • Homeland Security Bureau
  • Homicide Bureau
  • Information Technology Services Bureau (ITSB)
  • Professional Compliance Bureau
  • Marine Patrol
  • Motors Traffic Unit
  • Public Information and Education Bureau
  • Narcotics Bureau
  • Neighborhood Resource Unit (N.R.U.)
  • Organized Crime Section
  • Personnel Management Bureau
  • Police Legal Bureau
  • Property and Evidence Section
  • Public Corruption and Criminal Conspiracy Unit
  • Robbery Bureau
  • Robbery Intervention Detail (RID)
  • Cargo Theft Task Force
  • Street Terror Offender Program (S.T.O.P.)
  • Special Patrol Bureau (Motorcycle, D.U.I. Certified)
  • Special Response Team (S.R.T.)
  • Special Victims Bureau (Sexual Battery & Domestic Crimes)
  • Strategic Policing Operations Response Team (SPORT)
  • Miami-Dade Public Safety Training Institute
  • Underwater Recovery Unit
  • Southeast Regional Domestic Security Task Force

Popular cultureEdit

Miami-Dade Police is the law enforcement agency depicted in the following television shows, films, and video games:

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ (PDF) Retrieved March 13, 2019. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  2. ^ "Biographies - Juan J. Perez - Director". Miami-Dade County Online Services. Retrieved 2016-04-18.
  3. ^ "Miami-Dade Police". Miami-Dade County. Retrieved 2016-04-18.
  4. ^ a b c "Analysis of Potential Merger of the Miami-Dade Police Department and the Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation" (PDF). Miami-Dade County (June 2006). 2006-06-30. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-08-10. Retrieved 2007-06-16.
  5. ^ "Contact Miami-Dade Police Department." Miami-Dade Police Department. Retrieved on September 8, 2012.
  6. ^

External linksEdit