Taylor Ashley is a native of Lancaster County. He graduated from Indian Land High School and later graduated from USC-Lancaster. He also graduated cadet training and is with the Lancaster City Police Department. Taylor has worked for the Lancaster City Police for six years and two years ago was promoted to sergeant where he is over the C-watch shift. He has been married for a little over a year now, and they have three dogs.
During COVID-19, one of the biggest struggles has been adjusting to the possibility that someone they are called to see may be sick. Staying 6 feet away while trying to communicate or help someone is difficult. In addition, multiple emergency orders from State officials along with changing recommendations from health organizations made informing the public challenging for law enforcement. This is because what law enforcement was informing the public of may be different one day to the next. For example, on Tuesday the rule may be no more than 10 people could be together, but on Friday it may be only 3 people could be together. It made the job of officers somewhat harder because it’s not always something easy to address, but people generally understood it was for their safety and the safety of others.
While the pandemic has created a more stress on the job, Taylor says there are other things he worries about more in his line of duty. Officers have made changes to their regular routines by having people in custody wear mask, wiping down benches, spraying cars, and back seats where people are held. One of the hardest parts of their job when dealing with the public has been telling public businesses they had to close while private businesses were allowed to stay open. He said, “unlike the seat belt law where it’s something everyone knows and has been enforced for years, this is something new and understandably hard for people to accept.”
He wanted to be a police officer to serve his community and help others. His willingness to put himself on the front lines and do whatever it takes to ensure people’s safety has been his biggest drive to excel in his career. His favorite part of the job is knowing that every day is different. There is always constant change and it keeps him on his toes. The most rewarding factor to his job is when he sees people wave at him in public and thank him for his service, not because he sees himself as a hero, but his goal is to change the mind set of those who fear police. In particular, he wants young children to know they are there to protect and serve their community – to be there when they need them.