City of Ventura logoDuring National Police Week, happening May 12-18, the Ventura Police Department proudly acknowledges the valor of its 135 dedicated officers, who pledge their lives to safeguard Ventura. Amidst the commendations, Ventura PD honors Detective Stephanie Avila as Officer of the Year.

“I am incredibly proud of our officers and deeply grateful for their families’ steadfast support throughout the challenges they face,” said Police Chief Darin Schindler. “Leading a team of compassionate professionals who serve with integrity is an absolute privilege.”

With a career spanning over 12 years in law enforcement, Detective Avila joined Ventura PD in 2015 and has showcased expertise and versatility across patrol operations, crisis negotiations, major crimes, and instructional roles including field training.

“Stephanie epitomizes dedication and excellence, embodying the spirit of service in her unwavering commitment to solving cases, fostering community relations, and supporting her colleagues,” shared Sergeant Joe Munger. “Stephanie’s selflessness, resilience, and tireless work ethic, set a standard of excellence worthy of this recognition.”

In 2023, Ventura PD responded to over 84,500 calls for service, processed over 15,000 police reports, conducted 2,500 investigations, and made 4,851 arrests.

National Police Week is also a time to remember fallen heroes like Ventura Police Sergeant Darlon “Dee” Dowell, who made the ultimate sacrifice on August 7, 1978, and whose legacy is honored through the naming of Dowell Drive, the street in which the Ventura Police headquarters is located.

The Ventura Police Department is currently hiring police officer trainees, lateral police officers, criminal investigative technicians, and police cadets. For more information about the Ventura Police Department recruitment and hiring process, visit