Stillwater News

Stillwater Public Safety Entities Answered the Call in 2021 Despite National and Statewide Challenges

Released:Jan 31, 2022

(STILLWATER, OK) – Stillwater public safety entities remained steadfast to provide safety, health and community services amid nationwide and statewide challenges. Response data from 2021 shared at the Council meeting this evening reflects there were more answered service call-outs than the previous year, six presidential declared disasters managed, and numerous severe weather deployments.

“These men and women are the embodiment of proactive public safety and service above self. They spend countless hours preparing, planning and implementing every possible precaution to assist our citizens and community,” City Manager Norman McNickle said. “We appreciate their hard work and leadership.”

Stillwater’s public safety is the collaboration of Stillwater Police Department (SPD), Stillwater Fire Department (SFD), Stillwater Emergency Management (SEMA), and Animal Welfare.

SPD: Police responded to more than 30,000 calls in 2021, including 9-1-1 emergencies (3,515), non-emergency calls (16,392), officer initiated calls (9,753), and monitored alarm systems (392). Leadership: Police Chief Jeff Watts and Asst. Chief Shannon Jordan

SFD: Fire responded to more than a thousand additional calls in 2021 than 2020. Of the nearly 4,000 calls – 46% were EMS, 25% fire alarms, 6% grass fires, 6% vehicle accidents with injury, and 2% structure fires. Leadership: Chief Terry Essary and Fire Marshall Steve Sylvester

SEMA: Emergency Management and volunteers were deployed in 35 severe weather events, managed 6 catastrophes that were declared presidential disasters, assisted Stillwater Medical Center and the Payne Co. Health Dept. with health crisis concerns due to COVID-19, provided technical assistance to SOT and SWAT, and provided logistics and support for firefightingLeadership: Director Rob Hill and Deputy Director Brenden Pope

Animal Welfare: In 2021, they had call-outs to 2,117 events, which include picking up or dropping off shelter animals with the veterinarian (553), picking up dogs that were at-large (448), picking up deceased animals (325), removing stray animals from private property (154), performing welfare checks (125), responding to bite complaints (40), and barking complaints (23). Animal Welfare is under the direction of Stillwater Police since it is public safety. Leadership: Captain Royce Stephens and Director Rachel Wasserman

“This information only addresses one area – it is a small fraction of the phenomenal and selfless service they provide each and every one of us. We did not even touch on the community service events such as “Shop with a Cop” and “Cops and Bobbers,” their dedication to plan and protect at major events such as Oklahoma State University’s Homecoming and Walkaround, Stillwater’s Holiday Parade, Martin Luther King, Jr. March, and others. Not to mention they are the first called for all emergencies, eagerly answering the call to assist multiple organizations throughout our great City whenever needed. In short, we are safer and healthier because of their commitment and we appreciate their sacrifice and that of their families,” said Dawn Jones, PIO, City of Stillwater.

All of the public safety entities support and enforce training throughout their departments. Those in training to become a police officer experience multiple weeks of training - 49 weeks for uncertified officers and then an additional 32 weeks of training for certified officers. All of the training must be completed prior to working in the field alone. Stillwater Firefighters received more than 8,300 hours of training in 2021 alone.



For inquiries, contact Dawn Jones, PIO, Communications Department at (405) 742-8214 or email

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