The Louisville Police Department was started on June 9, 1806 with five officers. They were to enforce all laws in Louisville and to enforce the harbor regulations. On December 11, 1810, a new officer was hired as a "Watch" for the city. "Watches" were paid $250 quarterly or $62.50 a month.
March 8, 1856 - The General Assembly of the Commonwealth passed an act relating to the "Police Department in the City of Louisville". This act repealed the office of watchman and established a police department. It was decided on April 24, 1856 that the police department should be modeled after the ones in the eastern cities, with a total of fifty-two officers from Chief of Police to officer. The city was divided into eleven police districts and the officers were assigned accordingly. By 1872, the department had grown to 180 men. As of January 5, 2003, the Louisville Police Department had 733 officers and consisted of 6 districts serving the City of Louisville.
1829 - The first documented bank robbery occurred in Louisville at the Commonwealth Bank. September 17, 1830, the second documented bank robbery occurred in which $25,000 was taken. The perpetrators of this crime were never identified.
February 1898 - Chief of Police Jacob H. Haager began using the first covered patrol wagons.
1920 - The first police rifle team was organized and equipped with armor from a large downtown store.
1921 - Alice Dunlop was the first woman on the police department.
1923 - The first black policewoman was hired, which brought the total number of women in the department to four. Also, Page Hemphill and William Woods were sworn in as the first black men on the department.
January 1, 1932 - The department's first Crime Prevention Bureau was put into effect.
December 28, 1948 - The Vice Squad was implemented in the department. The Vice Squad was later disbanded in December 1970.
1960's - The Louisville Police Bomb Squad was formed.
March 23, 1974 - The police department established a Sex Crimes investigation squad.
March 1981 - The K-9 Unit was started.
1981 - The Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) Team was started and became functional in July 1982.
July 1989 - The Louisville Police Department won "Police Cruiser of the Year" from the 3M Company.