Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Origin and History
Their first major engagement was the following year, 1854, in support of British soldiers during the events leading up to, and confrontation at, the Eureka Stockade. A new Chief Commissioner, Charles MacMahon, was appointed that same year. The first death in the line of duty, that of Constable William Hogan, also occurred in 1854.
The following couple of decades saw the growth of the police force, including the beginning of construction of the Russell Street police station in 1859 and the establishment of a special station in William Street to protect the Royal Mint in 1872.
Six years later, three more officers (Kennedy, Lonigan and Scanlan) were killed by the Kelly Gang at Stringybark Creek. Two years later, in 1880, the police confronted the Kelly Gang at Glenrowan. A shoot-out ensued on June 28, during which three members of the Kelly Gang were killed and following which Ned Kelly was captured.
1880 also saw the formation of the Aboriginal Tracker Corps. The corps was disbanded in 1968.
On 1 November 1923 members of the Victorian Police Force refused duty and went on strike over the introduction of a new supervisory system. Riots occurred in Melbourne CBD, and special constables are enlisted. None of the strikers are ever employed as policemen again, and the government increased pay and conditions for police as a result.
On October 12, 1988, officers Steven Tynan and Damian Eyre were gunned down in Walsh Street Killings. This was just one part of a long saga involving the Melbourne Underworld, which continues to this day.
In 2001 Christine Nixon was made Chief Commissioner, thus becoming the first female to head a police force in Australia.
As of 2002, the Victoria Police had over 10,500 personnel along with over 2,100 civilian staff in more than 330 police stations. Its motto is "Uphold the Right".
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