by Melinda Conlon
At the City Commission Meeting on Monday, April 5, 2021, the Commission voted unanimously to appoint Interim Police Chief Daniel Carswell as the permanent Police Chief for the City.
Carswell has served as the Interim Police Chief since November 9, 2020 with the departure of Rob Hardwick, now the St. Johns County Sheriff.
During the meeting, Carswell was flanked by many of his officers, including Sergeant Natalie Gillespie who said that Carswell has poured his heart and soul into the St. Augustine Beach Police Department since 2006. Also speaking was Sheriff Rob Hardwick who voiced his strong support for Carswell both as the Sheriff and personally from his family as residents of St. Augustine Beach.
Additional strong words of support came from County Commissioner Henry Dean, a resident of St. Augustine Beach as well as Travis Smith, Special Investigator with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
Carswell stated “I am very excited and honored to be selected as Chief of Police. The St. Augustine Beach Police Department has an outstanding history of police chiefs who were loved by this community and the officers they led. I hope to continue in that tradition and maintain the reputation that the SABPD has earned. This agency means everything to me, and I am going to continue to work hard to serve this community every day. I am very thankful for the support of my family, friends, and entire SABPD family. Without their help and support over the past year, this would not have been possible.”
Chief Carswell began his career with the St. Augustine Beach Police Department 15 years ago in 2006. Carswell served as a patrolman for six years and was promoted to Patrol Sergeant where he supervised the daily activities of a patrol shift as well as the Field Training Program for the agency. He also served as Patrol Operations Lieutenant where he supervised all patrol activities, internal affairs, special events and agency training. In 2020 Carswell was promoted to the rank of Commander by then Chief of Police, Hardwick. On November 9, 2020, Carswell was selected by the Commission to serve as Interim Chief of Police. Mayor Margaret England stated, “Dan Carswell’s appointment as the St. Augustine Beach Chief of Police is very appropriate and well deserved. Chief Carswell’s dedication, love of the City, plus his proven ability as interim Chief to lead our Police Department and coordinate with other agencies make him the perfect choice. I am grateful for his service and wish him every success.”
Chief Carswell has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Public Administration from Flagler College and is currently enrolled with Barry University completing his Master of Public Administration degree. He is a graduate from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s Senior Leadership Program and the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Florida Executive Development Seminar.