Photo of Interim Chief of Police John Hankins

With the retirement of Chief Mike Cantaloupe on December 31, 2020, City Manager Stockton Whitten has appointed Commander John Hankins to serve as Interim Chief of Police during the recruitment of the next chief. 

Interim Chief Hankins joined the Cocoa Police Department in January 1991, where he successfully worked his way up through the ranks, serving in leadership roles for more than 24 years. During his tenure he has served in nearly all aspects of the department’s operations, including; field training officer, traffic homicide investigator, SWAT, Crisis Negotiations, instructor, detective, corporal, supervisor in the Special Investigations Unit, training coordinator, accreditation manager, tactical flight officer (BCSO), professional compliance supervisor, and internal affairs. Interim Chief Hankins supervised the department’s first accreditation and re-accreditation cycle and continues to serve as an assessor and team leader for the Commission for Florida Law Enforcement Accreditation.

In his recent role as operations commander, he was responsible for providing executive management to all uniform service related aspects of the department which includes; patrol operations, SWAT and Crisis Negotiations Team, K-9, Marine, Traffic/Motors, and Community Resources. He also holds the distinction of being one of the first DOD certified SWAT tactical medics in Brevard County.  As commander, Hankins also managed the oversight of the Support Services Division and the Department’s annual budget.

Interim Chief Hankins’ diverse law enforcement background has provided him the experience and operational knowledge of all elements of the law enforcement field.

Interim Chief Hankins holds a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Central Florida and is a graduate of the University of Louisville Southern Police Institute’s 63rd session of the Command Officer’s Development Course. He was born and raised in Cocoa where he attended Cocoa High School, after which he joined the U.S. Navy and proudly served our Country from 1985-1991.

Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Police Reform:

The Cocoa Police Department is an accredited law enforcement agency through the Commision for Florida Law Enforcement Accreditation since 2006. The accreditation renewal process occurs every three years with a rigorous review. The Cocoa Police Department has successfully maintained this accredited status through each of these reviews (four to date). The next renewal process will be in 2021.

An accreditation program has long been recognized as a means of maintaining the highest standards of professionalism. Accreditation is the certification by an independent reviewing authority that an entity has met specific requirements and prescribed standards.

As a result of the high professional standards demanded of an accredited law enforcement agency, and a decades-long commitment to a community policing philosophy, the Cocoa Police Department is a model agency for the nation. Many of the reforms being discussed today were implemented by CPD many years ago and are continuously reviewed and updated as needed.

Commendation Form Graphic

The Cocoa Police Department appreciates the importance of recognizing individual achievements.  Recognition within the department and the community will assist in the overall awareness of excellence obtained by the men and women of this agency.  Please fill out and submit the commendation form if you would like to recognize an officer or employee. 


The Cocoa Police Department recognizes officers and employees are responsible to the public for their conduct.  At certain times a conflict may exist between a citizens and a police officer and/or an employee in the performance of his/her duties.  If you believe that a police officer and/or employee has acted improperly, you should bring this to the attention of the the on-duty supervisor.  If you would like to file a formal complaint, please come by the police department and fill out the complaint form detailing your concerns. This form must be signed by the complainant in the presence of a notary in order to be submitted. 


See a crime? Drop a dime! Text or email us 24/7 at DROPADIME@COCOAPOLICE.COM.  Your text will be received as an email to our communications center and police command staff.  We will keep your information anonymous.  For emergencies please remember to dial 911.  






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