New Port Richey Police Chiefs


New Port Richey Police Chiefs

This page was created on Jan. 14, 2020, and is still being researched. Some names could be missing.

Louis Henry “Dutch” Meeth 1924-? Elected Marshal in 1924, defeating Frank Boshaw, V. O. Safranek, and E. H. Hill, although some of these candidates may have dropped out of the race. By 1925 he had the title Chief of Police. Meeth was still chief in 1931. b. 1879; d. 1954.
Frank Boshaw about 1934 Referred to as police chief on Jan. 19, 1934, and Nov. 1934. b. 1865; d. 1950. His obituary has: “Mr. Boshaw, who came to New Port Richey over 25 years ago, was in his younger days connected with sawmilling and logging operations in Michigan. He had served as chief of police of New Port Richey for several years in the 1930s and had been a special police officer since on many occasions.”
Clyde Lapham about 1935 Referred to as police chief on Feb. 8, 1935. On Oct. 4, 1935, the New Port Richey Press reported, “At the meeting Tuesday, the resignation of Clyde Lapham, chief of police, was accepted and John Lackey was immediately appointed to the post.”
John Lackey 1935-1937? On Sept. 16, 1936, a newspaper referred to “John Lackey, New Port Richey Police Chief for the past 11 months….” On Oct. 22, 1937, the County Commission appointed Lackey as traffic officer.
A. C. Black 1937?-1938
M. N. Olson 1938-1941? Named chief in January 1938. Resigned to take a position with the new sheriff, Leslie Bessenger.
Gardner Foskett 1941?-1942? On Jan. 3, 1941, a newspaper reported that Foskett is acting as chief of police, in place of M. N. Olson, who it is stated will take a position with the county’s new sheriff, Leslie Bessenger. Foskett is mentioned as police chief on Feb. 6, 1942.
W. M. Gaddis about 1942 Mentioned as police chief on Feb. 27, 1942.
Basil E. Gaines ? to 1942 In Oct. 1942 the New Port Richey Press reported, “Mayor Grey reported that Basil E. Gaines had tendered his resignation as police chief, due to the fact that he had joined the Navy. He advised council that Irving Warburton had been appointed in his place.”
Irving N. Warburton 1942-1944 Mentioned on Oct. 16, 1942. On Jan. 21, 1944, a newspaper reported, “Chief of Police I. M. Warburton has resigned his position with the city effective Saturday. … Dr. Brookman stated that Joseph J. Fraddosio at present constable for this district would take over Chief Warburton’s duties when he leaves Saturday.” In March 1944 Warburton announced his candidacy for Justice of the Peace.
Joseph J. Fraddosio 1944-1945
Elmer Trufant 1945-? On Feb. 15, 1945, the Tampa Tribune reported “Elmer Trufant has taken over the job of police chief of New Port Richey. He succeeded Joseph Fraddosio, who resigned. Trufant had a number of years’ experience as a policeman in New York city.”
Russell M. Thomas ? – 1947 On July 5, 1947, city council fired Police Chief Russell M. Thomas. Elmer Trufant was appointed acting chief.
Elmer Trufant (acting) 1947 On Dec. 20, 1947, city council accepted the resignation of Elmer Trufant and appointed Verbie Barga as his successor.
Verbie Clifford Barga 1947-1960 Barga came here from Bradford, Ohio. He was born on Jan. 26, 1897, and died in office on June 16, 1960.
Don Morrison 1960-1961 Morrison was appointed temporary chief in July 1960.
Chelcie E. (Spike) Barga 1961-1969 Chelcie Barga was appointed on a temporary basis last Tuesday, reported a newspaper on April 7, 1961. He resigned on Nov. 1, 1969.
Lee Cartwright 1969-1971? Cartwright was appointed chief in Nov. 1969. On Jan. 15, 1971, a newspaper reported that he had recently resigned.
John Kirpatrick 1971-1972 Named acting chief on Jan. 15, 1971. Resigned in mid-February 1972, at which time John Short was named acting chief.
John Short 1972-1976 Name acting chief on Feb. 22, 1972, and appointed chief in April 1972.
James C. Bottner 1976-1986 Appointed by city manager Jack Theurer on Jan. 2, 1976. Fired by city manager Charles McCool for insubordination on Feb. 11, 1986. Bottner was replaced by a “management steering committee” of two high-ranking police officers and the city personnel administrator.
Aage Madsen 1986-2003 Selected on Oct. 21, 2003. Retired on Oct. 31, 2003, Capts. Darryl Garman and Martin Rickus will run the dept, which employs about 50 people including 32 officers.
Martin Rickus 2004-2010 Named new chief by city manager Gerald Seeber. Retired in June 2010.
Jeffrey Harrington 2010-2011 Appointed by city manager John Schneiger. Served 14 months as chief, then accepted a position in the sheriff’s office.
James Steffens 2011-2013 Named acting chief in Oct. 2011, and officially became police chief on Dec. 13, 2011. Resigned March 16, 2013, to join the sheriff’s office.
Kim Bogart 2013- Appointed interim chief in March 2013 and chief in August 2013.


In 1921 the New Port Richey Press reported on a robbery of the local drug store and wrote, “At the present time we have no police protection, whereas, if we were incorporated, we should at least be in a position to employ a town marshal.”

On Oct. 16, 1925, the New Port Richey Press reported that E. A. Leeston-Smith, Fred J. How, and W. K. Jahn were appointed as special police officers.

On Oct. 30, 1925, the New Port Richey Press referred to Mr. How as Director of Day Police.

On Nov. 6, 1925, the New Port Richey Press reported the appointment of Clyde J. Lapham as special police at the Pagoda dancing pavilion.

On Dec. 4, 1925, the New Port Richey Press reported, “The council went into executive session for the consideration of the appointment of a day police officer. L. C. Poole offered to act in this capacity for the month of December without charge to the city. His officer was accepted and Mr. Poole was appointed. The city agreed to furnish him with a uniform. He was sworn in by the mayor on Friday and has been doing duty all day directing traffic at the intersection of Main street and the Boulevard where the street is torn up by the installation of the sewer system.”

On Dec. 11, 1925, the New Port Richey Press reported, “A. H. Kolb, representing the Parent-Teachers Association, appeared before the council and complained of the fast driving in the school zones, especially along the Boulevard by the high school. This matter was left in the hands of police Officer L. C. Pool for attention.”

In January 1943 Russell Thomas of New Port Richey was named Acting Constable for Pasco County District 2 during the military service of Joseph L. Fraddosio.

On Nov. 26, 1943, the New Port Richey Press reported, “Charles H. Hunter was named as special police for election day.”

At a city council meeting on Dec. 1, 1948, New Port Richey city council passed a resolution requesting Pasco County Sheriff Leslie Bessenger and the Office of State Shell Fish Commission against alleged net fishing occurring at night. It was pointed out that the city lacked sufficient police power to adequately handle the situation.

History of Pasco County front page