Brief History of the Western Australia Police
The history of Policing in
Western Australia began with the founding of the
colony in 1829. Governor Stirling appointed
fifteen unpaid volunteer constables to maintain
public order on 4th December 1829.
A troop of Mounted Police
was formed in 1834 and other types of police were
added as the needs of the colony changed,
particularly after the introduction of convicts.
The colony's Legislative Council passed a Police
Ordinance in 1849 that outlined police powers and
responsibilities. The force was formally
established in 1853, when a Chief of Police was
appointed and a Code of Rules published outlining
an administrative structure.
In 1861, a second and
expanded Police Ordinance was passed to clarify
the chain of command, the powers and
responsibilities of members and the various
offences they had to deal with. In that year, the
force consisted of about 75 commissioned officers
Since then over 12,000 men
and women have served Western Australia as police
officers - some for less than one month, others
for periods exceeding thirty years.