Police Department

La Center Police
For non-emergency law enforcement assistance, call 311

With our values of integrity, teamwork, and excellence as our guide, we are dedicated to protecting those who live work or visit the City of La Center.

The City of La Center Police Department provides law enforcement services to our community. For information, please call 360-263-2745 during business hours Monday – Friday 8:00 am to 5:00 PM.

3-1-1 When and How

About Your Police Department

Mission Statement

With our values of Integrity, Teamwork and Excellence as our guide, we are dedicated to:

  • Safeguarding and protecting those who live, work, visit and commute in La Center, by providing a professional, proactive level of law enforcement service.
  • Upholding the highest standard of performance, behavior and ethics through our conduct, appearance and demeanor.
  • Seeking effective solutions to issues through a partnership with the community.
  • Accepting future challenges by learning and developing new skills and techniques to provide the highest quality of service.

Our Values

Integrity: We will exhibit an unwavering commitment to Honesty, Accountability, Trust, Loyalty and Ethical Behavior.

Teamwork: We will work together, displaying and promoting the characteristics of Respect, Communication, Cooperation, Reliability, Openness and Flexibility to more effectively accomplish our mission.

Excellence: We will provide the highest levels of Professionalism, Dedication, Responsiveness and Impartiality in the performance of our duties, with the attitude that all tasks will receive our best effort.


  • The town of La Center was established in 1874.
  • In 1889 a Territorial Judge ruled over the area.
  • On September 2, 1909 W.P. Wampler was appointed the first Marshal.
  • On that same date, the committee who appointed Wampler discussed selecting a site for a jail.
  • December 1909 Joseph Brothers was Judge.
  • 1913 A.J. Culbertson was Justice of the Peace.
  • 1914 E.L. Hughes was Police Judge.
  • 1919 H.E. Basham kept the peace.
  • 1924 George Haskins, who owned the local Garage, was appointed Marshal.
  • 1925, E.L. Mitchell was Police Judge.
  • September 1925 G.M. Zeider was Police Judge.
  • 1925 W.H. McCann was Police Judge.
  • 1929 W.M. McCann was Justice of the Peace.
  • 1932 W.M. McCann was Police Judge.
  • For 9 years in the 1960’s, John Gary served as Municipal Judge.
  • October 31, 1971, Paul Jackson became La Center’s Marshal, and served until 1981.
  • Lori Benfit-Neff was hired in 1979 as a police officer. She eventually became La Center’s Town Marshal.
  • 1986 Tim Hopkin was hired as a police officer, who became Police Chief in 1996 and served until 2012.
  • 2013 Marc Denney was hired as Police Chief.
  • 2021 Bob Richardson was hired as Interim Administrative Police Chief
  • 2024 Commander Phil Sample from CCSO takes over as Police Chief.

Contact our Team

Commander Phil Sample


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