WEST PITTSTON, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — History is made in Luzerne County as its first-ever Regional Police Department now patrols the streets. Five local police departments have come together to form the new Wyoming Area Regional Police Department.

It went into service on New Year’s Day, and on Monday, Eyewitness News Reporter Madonna Mantione spoke with the chief to learn more.

The Wyoming Area Regional Police Department is the result of a merger between five municipalities in Luzerne County.

They are Wyoming Borough, West Wyoming, West Pittston, Exeter Township, and Exeter Borough.

“This began to be conceived about 20 years ago,” said Wyoming Area Regional Police Department Chief D.F. Pace.

Chief Pace is the leader of the new police force. He comes to Northeastern Pennsylvania after 22 years with the Philadelphia Police Department.

“Things are going very smoothly, and I’m pleasantly surprised at just how well things are going. The reason why it’s going so well is because I have an outstanding core of officers that have all contributed to the beginning of this police department,” said Chief Pace.

The officers’ cruisers will soon have updated decals showing the new logo.

They’re currently stationed at the former West Pittston Police Department, but in the future, headquarters will be moved to the former State Police Barracks on Wyoming Avenue.

“We have many officers now on duty where, as before, maybe one or two officers were responsible for covering the entire area, now we have a well-developed police department that’s offering far more coverage to the citizens, residents, and visitors of these five municipalities,” said Chief Pace.

Chief Pace says the Wyoming Area Regional Police Department currently has 16 full-time officers.