Department History

The Glenn Heights Police Department’s roots coincides with the City’s incorporation in 1969.  Joe Howard was the first head of the City’s law enforcement agency with his designation as Town Marshall in October of 1969.  He served for six months before Douglas Curry was appointed in April of 1970 as the Town Marshall.  In May of 1971 the Office of Town Marshall was abolished and the Glenn Heights Police Department was officially established.  Douglas Curry continued to serve, now as the City of Glenn Heights’ first Police Chief.  Chief Curry saw the City’s first police radio purchased, the City’s first citation issued, and the first police uniforms purchased.  Chief Curry's tenure as Police Chief ended in September of 1973.  Chief Lawson Dyer, Jr. became the next full-time Police Chief in November of 1973 and served through October of 1976.  Chief Dyer’s term saw the City purchase its first fully equipped police vehicle and saw the City appoint its first Municipal Court Judge, the Honorable Ike Vanden Eykel in June of 1976.  Chief John “Mike” Thornhill replaced Chief Dyer in October of 1976 and served as the Police Chief until April of 1983.  In September of 1978 Chief Thornhill also was appointed as the City of Glenn Heights’ first Fire Chief.  During Chief Thornhill's tenure, he saw the City’s first base radio and telephone installed at the Police Department.  The first full-time police officer, Mike Dupree, was hired during Chief Thornhill’s term.  After Chief Thornhill’s departure, other Police Chief’s that served the City of Glenn Heights were:  Chief Larry G. Haney, Chief George E. Spurgin, Chief Robert K. “Bob” Adams who saw the Department’s first Detective position during his tenure, Chief Carson D. Woodell who served from May of 1987 through June of 1989 and saw the E911 system established and saw the Department’s first computerized records system put into place.  Chief George Cowand who then served from November 1989 through March 1995, Chief Roy M. Layman who served from July 1995 through May 1999, and finally to Chief Phillip Mark Prasifka who began his service to the City in July of 1999.  Chief Prasifka has seen updated technology during his tenure, including in-car videos, laptops in the police vehicles, plus the implementation of many Community Oriented policing programs such as the Department’s famous annual National Night Out event.