There are some people  that an entire community wishes to never see retire. It’s probably safe to say that Dansville Police Sgt. Robin Humphrey is one of them. Yet this Tuesday will mark his last day on the job as a full-time police officer.


When asked what he plans to do next, he listed off a few items such as working on his house, travelling and finding a part-time job to keep himself busy.

There are some people  that an entire community wishes to never see retire. It’s probably safe to say that Dansville Police Sgt. Robin Humphrey is one of them. Yet this Tuesday will mark his last day on the job as a full-time police officer.


When asked what he plans to do next, he listed off a few items such as working on his house, travelling and finding a part-time job to keep himself busy.


As far as why he’s chosen to step down now from his more than 20 year career, he said that dealing with some of the harsh realities of police work has taken its toll.


More specifically, within the past year and a half, a bitter suicide and an infant death has been the catalyst for him to seriously consider retirement.


When the Village’s insurance required a department supervisor to work the night shift, he ended up working nights alone, and noticed that it didn’t require him to contribute as much as working days.


He said that although he understands the Village had to do what it had to do, “it was like putting me into solitary confinement,” and it added to his consideration of dropping his role.


Humphrey first became interested in the field of law enforcement as a Dansville High?School student. He entered law enforcement training at BOCES when he was a senior.


“I think that law enforcement, the profession, is a calling,” he said.


Humphrey started out with the Livingston?County Sheriff’s Department’s 911 center; then to Alfred P.D.; and then onto Canandaigua P.D.


He said that it was there that he got a taste of investigative work, and liked the challenge it offered.


But in Canandaigua, as with most police departments, investigative work is left to investigators.


However, he learned that in Dansville, an officer is a Jack of all trades, “and you have to be a master of them all because we don’t have the luxuries or the financial ability to have an investigator. So if you get a call, that’s yours right to the end.”


That challenge, combined with his mother’s ill health and the chance to come back to work in his hometown, was what made him decide to transfer to Dansville.


Humphrey laughed when he said his start date here was on April Fool’s Day, 1990. Ironically, he said his first pension check is expected to come this April Fool’s Day.


Humphrey said that throughout the past 21 years, interacting with the people of the village has been the highlight of his career.


He said the key to the job is treating everyone – including those he arrests – with fairness and respect, “and hopefully, it comes back to you.”


He’s carried that aspect into his supervisory role as a sergeant as well. Humphrey obtained the rank of sergeant three years ago, almost to the day of his retirement.


In addition to his Village policing duties, he was also the Dansville school resource officer for about six years.


Humphrey said that it was an opportunity for him to be a positive influence to students by, in many cases, just being available for kids to talk to. He said the SRO duty was like a second career for him.


Officer Sheena Schafer, a Springwater native who started on the Dansville police force about a month ago, said that the morale of the department impressed her right from the start. Sgt. Humphrey has had a lot to do with that, she said.


Chief Charles Perkins, who has worked alongside Humphrey when he was an officer himself, said that Humphrey has been very community minded, and “he’s definitely going to be missed because from my perspective, it’s nice to have that commitment to the community without having to come in here and remind him of it. He’s reminding other people of it; he’s reminding me of it.”


Perkins said that although the department can put someone else in a uniform, the person in the uniform, and their sense of community, can’t be easily replaced.