The primary law enforcement activities of the Harbor Police Department are the responsibility of the Patrol Division. Preventive patrol duties and inspectional activities include:
- Prevention of crime through proactive patrol
- Discovery of hazards
- Coordinating with Port businesses and tenants to ensure good public relations and crime prevention
- Fire inspections and patrol
- Response to calls for service
- Investigation and reporting of all crimes
- Administering aid to the injured
- Arresting of offenders
- Giving testimony in court cases
- Traffic accident investigation, direction, control and enforcement
- Regulation of certain businesses or activities as required by law or ordinances of the Port of New Orleans
- Maintenance of public order
- Assisting in providing emergency services
- Reporting the arrivals and departure of marine vessels within the Port
- Development of good public relations between citizens and the Department
The Marine Division, formerly the Harbor Police Patrol and Rescue Boat Division, was created in 1956. HPD Marine Division was created to provide the following services:
- Enforcing state, local and Dock Board laws within the jurisdiction of the Harbor Police Department
- Providing escorts and security for designated vessels docking in the Port of New Orleans
- Assisting U.S. Coast Guard and all other maritime-related enforcement agencies within the jurisdiction of the Harbor Police Department
- Rescue and recovery efforts along the waterways of the Port of New Orleans
- Maintaining a record of marine traffic (docking vessels) along the Port of New Orleans
The HPD Training Division is home to the Harbor Police Academy. The mission of the Harbor Police Academy is to educate our officers on the ever-changing city, state and federal laws pertaining to policing; to ensure that new recruits meet the Department’s highest levels of professionalism; and to meet the requirements of the Louisiana Commission on Law Enforcement’s Peace Officers Standards and Training (POST).
The Harbor Police Academy was created in 1974 and granted POST accreditation as a certified basic training academy for law enforcement officers. The Academy trains recruits not only for the Harbor Police Department, but also for the Orleans Levee Board, Crescent City Connection, St. Bernard Sheriff’s Office, other Louisiana sheriff’s departments and major university police departments.
Criminal Investigation Division
The Harbor Police Department’s Criminal Investigations Division was established in 1970. The division was formed to follow up on reports of cargo thefts, ship burglaries, robberies of seamen and other crimes.
The Criminal Investigations Division also performs, but is not limited to, the following functions:
- Filing criminal cases with the district attorney’s office
- Performing VIP and dignitary escorts and protective services
- Working closely with task forces from local law enforcement and federal law enforcement divisions
- Collection of evidence and property from crime scenes and ensuring the security of such in the Department’s property and evidence storage facility
- Conducting applicant investigations and background checks
- Consulting with the District Attorney’s screening attorneys
- Conducting interviews/interrogations of suspects, witnesses and members of the local business community
Bicycle Patrol Division
The Harbor Police Department Bicycle Patrols began on May 10, 2017. The designated patrol area is from Henderson to Governor Nicholls. The bike patrols have been welcomed by both businesses and tourists as their presence adds a needed safety element for that busy area.
HPD obtained six new state-of-the-art bikes in August 2017. Each bike is equipped with blue lights, a siren and a PA system.