In recognition of his decades of service to IUPUI through his work for the Indiana University Police Department, his dedication to building relationships across our campus, his deep and abiding commitment to community policing, and his tremendous accomplishments as an IUPUI graduate who spent his entire career serving the university, Deputy Chief of Police Bill Abston was presented an IUPUI Chancellor’s Medallion by Chancellor Nasser H. Paydar on January 29, 2021.
Abston began his 43-year law enforcement career at IUPUI as a student cadet in 1977. After attending the IU Police Academy, he was hired as a full-time officer in 1978. Since then, Abston has moved up the ranks from sergeant to lieutenant to captain in 2000. In 2014, he was promoted to deputy chief. A fixture on the IUPUI campus for more than four decades, Abston has also been a firearms instructor for the department, as well as an instructor at the IU Police Academy.
Regardless of the situation, Deputy Chief Abston has been willing to serve, including time spent leading IUPD at IUPUI as the interim police chief. It also includes responding during emergencies. For instance, while a patrol officer in 1979, Abston and an Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officer responded to a report of shots fired near the Medical Science building where a disgruntled employee had shot his supervisor and set the building on fire. Together, they apprehended the suspect, rendered aid, and made an arrest for homicide and arson.
Abston attended Personal and Dignitary Protection School in 1984 and over the years worked dignitary protection for visitors to campus such as former Vice President Dan Quayle, former Secretary of Education William Bennett, and former ambassador Jeane Kirkpatrick. He also attended the FBI National Academy in 2002 and was a member of the Public Information Officer section of the International Association of Chiefs of Police.