Super Bowl LVII: Father and Daughter Trooper Duo team to keep visitors safe.

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February 7, 2023

PHOENIX - Super Bowl weekend means law enforcement is super busy not just around State Farm Stadium, but across the Valley and the state.

Officials with the Arizona Department of Public Safety say among the officers who will help keep Arizonans and visitors to the state safe are two troopers with a rather special bond.

Russ Dodge has been helping people in trouble for a long time in this state. For years, we have covered Dodge in the hairiest of scenarios, from water rescues to mountain rescues. Dodge's daughter, Lakin, watched this too as she grew up. She wasn't daunted. Rather, she was intrigued.

"At the age of eight, Lakin told me she was going to take my job some day," said Russ. "We found out we were expecting her while she was in the academy."

Lakin grew up enjoying many activities, but hanging it out with her dad at swift water rescue trainings, as well as getting to know her dad's co-workers and friends, left a big impression.            

"Just meeting all the people: the military, the PJs (pararescues), the Marine combat guys, the pilots, I was, like, 'man, this would be awesome!" said Lakin.

It was so awesome for Lakin, in fact, that in 2022, she enrolled in the DPS Academy, and became a trooper. Her proud father pinned her during the ceremony.

"We've both been assigned to work security events at the Super Bowl together, as partners," said Russ.Line

Michigan State Trooper, and DNR Officer Rescue Couple from Burning Home

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February 3, 2023

MASONVILLE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WLUC) - A Michigan State Police Trooper and a Michigan DNR Officer are being recognized for saving residents from a burning home in Delta County.

According to the DNR, five minutes after Delta Dispatch put out a call Monday reporting a structure fire along US-2 in Rapid River, DNR Conservation Officer Stephen Butzin and MSP Trooper Zane Weaver arrived at the scene.

The Masonville Township Fire Department and EMS personnel weren’t far behind, with the residents of the home — an unidentified husband and wife — reportedly still inside their burning house.

“I was informed that the wife left the house. When she returned, she opened the door and smoke began to pour out of the residence. She then called 911,” Butzin said.

The DNR said Butzin and Weaver ran up to the front door and found thick, brown smoke coming out of the residence, and they observed a woman standing outside.

“As I walked in the house, you could not see anything at standing height,” Butzin said. “I had to crouch to be able to see through the house as it was full of smoke.”

Trooper Weaver located the husband on the couch and yelled for him to exit the residence, but he would not comply with the order.

“Trooper Weaver and I had to physically grab ahold of the husband and carry him out of the residence,” Butzin said. “I believe he did not even know his house was on fire.”

Once they had the man outside, they determined the woman they’d seen standing in the yard was the man’s wife and that no one else was inside the house.

The officers placed the man in the couple’s vehicle and instructed the woman to drive to the end of her road to allow for arriving firefighters to access the home.

Smoke was still pouring out of the house when firefighters approached the front door. They were able to quickly get inside to find a mattress burning in a bedroom.

Firefighters extinguished the fire, removed the mattress from the house and aired out the house.

The home’s residents were treated at the scene by Masonville Township EMS personnel. Butzin said neither the husband or wife sought further medical treatment.

Alger Delta Electric and DTE Energy also assisted firefighters and responding officers.

Butzin has been with the DNR Law Enforcement Division since July 2017 and is assigned to patrol Delta County. He was previously presented with a DNR Law Enforcement Division Life Saving Award for his quick action, with another officer, that resulted in the survival of two people involved in a personal injury snowmobile accident in January 2018.

The DNR said the incident illustrates well how police, firefighters and other responders work together to overcome challenges in emergency situations, especially in rural communities.Line

AAST Presents Kentucky with the Best-Looking Cruiser Honor for the 3rd time

2023 AAST BEST LOOKING CRUISER AWARD PIC

Pictured from left to right:  Major David F. Trimble, AAST KY Director Matt Scott, Commissioner Phillip J. Burnett, AAST Executive Director John Bagnardi, Lieutenant Colonel Michael C. Rogers, Major Darren S. Stapleton

On January 27, 2023, AAST Executive Director, John Bagnardi traveled to Kentucky State Polices academy in Frankfort to deliver the patrol’s award for winning AAST’s 2023 Best-Looking Cruiser Calendar contest. This is the 3rd time Kentucky has taken home the coveted spot of front page on the calendar.

Net proceeds of the calendar sales benefit the American Association of State Troopers Foundation that provides educational scholarship to dependents of AAST members.

The 2023 Calendars are still available for purchase at www.statetroopers.org for $10, shipping included.

Let’s all congratulate Kentucky on their win and prepare to vote in the coming months for the next cruiser winner in 2024! Line

Virginia State Police graduates 34 new troopers

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January 2, 2023

RICHMOND, Va. (WSET) — Virginia State Police has some new troopers on the force to begin the new year.

The 34 members of the 138th Basic Session began their eight weeks of academic, physical, and practical training at the Academy on Oct. 30 and were presented with their diplomas last Friday.

This is after they received more than 300 hours of classroom and field instruction in nearly 50 different subjects, including defensive tactics, cultural diversity, bias-free, and community relations, crime scene investigation, ethics and leadership, police professionalism, firearms, judicial procedures, officer survival, and crisis management.

The Accelerated Lateral Entry Program only accepts pre-certified Virginia law enforcement officers. VSP said each candidate for trooper must have been in good standing with their former law enforcement employer(s) and underwent an extensive background investigative and testing process.

Collectively, the 138th Basic Session accounts for more than 200 years of prior law enforcement experience.

“You entered the Academy with the invaluable experience of already understanding what it takes to serve and protect. You understand that to be a truly effective law-enforcement professional, there are certain lessons and virtues that can only come from within - integrity and attitude. Every day the citizens of the Commonwealth will depend on you to always be at your best. Even when, and especially when, others are at their worst. Integrity, fortitude, and compassion are essential to safeguard those we have pledged to serve and protect," Colonel Gary T. Settle, Virginia State Police Superintendent remarked to the graduating class.

After graduation, the 138th will return to the Academy for three weeks of hands-on training before heading to their assigned area where each Trooper will spend an additional six weeks paired up with a Field Training Officer learning his or her new patrol area.

138TH BASIC GRADUATING CLASS

Shadrack Kwasi Arko, Prince William

Zachary Michael, Bishop Henrico

Boreika ShaRayn Burwell, Roanoke

Kelsie Amanda Cobb, Accomack

Christopher Michael Combs, Wythe

Stephen Troy Comer, Halifax

Robert Allen Dudley, Highland

Cristian Adolfo Durham, Stafford

Brittney Nicole Dye, Fairfax

Timothy Jarrell Fellows, Hampton

Jerry Shane Fuller, Bland

Samuel William Good, III, Rockingham

Norman Eugene Gray, Jr., Charles City

Andre Michael Johnson, Prince William

Joshua Louis Johnson, Henrico

Johnathan David Lackey, Bland

Jacob H. Logan, Franklin

Dalton Shayne Marshall, Wythe

Brian K. Misener, Accomack

Codee Lee Postell, Sussex

Greggory K. Reynolds, Giles

Kyle David Rose, Virginia Beach

Troy Malcolm Shelton, Orange

Christopher W. Shively, Roanoke

James Irwin Shutt, III, Prince George

Matthew Savino Spinosa, Prince William

Bryce Michael Steele, Southampton

Brandon Trevon Taylor, Clarke

Joey Barnett Throckmorton, Charlotte

Kevin Scot Tully, James City

Goran Vukovic, Botetourt

Trenzas D. Whitley, Henrico

Garrison Douglas Wright, Rockingham

James Robert Wright, BathLine

Maryland State Police troop commander takes on new challenge at 2023 Polar Bear Plunge

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January 23, 2023

WESTMINSTER, Maryland (WBAL) — The troop commander of the Maryland State Police Westminster barracks is taking on a new challenge at this year’s Polar Bear Plunge.

Before the main plunge on Feb. 4, the Super Plungers will go into the icy water of the Chesapeake Bay 24 times in 24 hours, all to raise money for Special Olympics Maryland athletes. This year, there are some new members of the team.

“(This is my) first time trying to do the Super Plunge,” Capt. Brian Smith said. “I have always thought, ‘Wow, that’s something I need to do before the end of my career.'”

Smith is no stranger to the bay. For more than two decades, the captain has participated in the Police Plunge and the Law Enforcement Torch Run fundraiser. His efforts earned him the Flame of Hope award for his unwavering support.

“I will treasure that forever. I feel like I won the Heisman,” Smith said. “The motto of the Special Olympics is, ‘Let me win, and if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.’ And, it’s truly what it’s all about, and the joy that they bring in.”

Smith, along with veteran Super Plunger Josh Smith, who are not related, are still trying to reach their $10,000 goals ahead of the Super Plunge, and they have an invitation now that a new governor is in office — a challenge before the main event.

“We have a new governor, now,” Josh Smith said.

“We need to get him in there, right?” Capt. Smith said.

“Yeah, that’s right,” Josh Smith said.

“It’s become such a huge event — the community-involved Corporate Plunge and the School Plunge,” Capt. Smith said. “To watch it grow after the past 27 years has been incredible.”Line

NJ state troopers help woman deliver baby inside Warren County police station

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January 22, 2023

HOPE TOWNSHIP, NJ (Warren County) – New Jersey state troopers helped deliver a baby Saturday morning inside their police station in Hope Township.

According to New Jersey State Police spokesperson Trooper Charles Marchan, on Jan. 21, at around 4:27 a.m., a husband drove his wife to the NJ State Police Hope Barracks, located on Route 521, for assistance because she was in labor.

The baby was born in the lobby area of the station, Marchan said.

The mother and baby were then transported to an area hospital, Marchan said.Line

Highway Patrol Welcomes New Troopers

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Dec 26, 2022

Wyoming Highway Patrol Academy Class 103 received an early Christmas present on Friday as they completed their 20 week training academy and were commissioned from Academy Recruit to Wyoming State Trooper.

Trooper Chad Dollick / Badge #103/ Duty Station = Gillette

Trooper Clancy Gines / Badge #104 / Duty Station = Rock Springs

· Overall Fitness Award = Clancy Gines

· Firearms Proficiency Award = Chad Dollick

· Academic Award = Chad Dollick

· Colonel's Leadership Award = Chad Dollick

Although potentially the smallest WHP academy class ever commissioned, the quality of the class is as large as ever.

Please join us in congratulating WHP Academy Class 103 and Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from your Wyoming Highway Patrol!Line

AAST Memorial Scholarship Program

brierton memorial

The Florida Highway Patrol recently paid tribute to retired Colonel David H. Brierton, Jr. by dedicating American Flags to his wife and children in his honor. After a sudden illness, Colonel Brierton passed away on December 19, 2022, at the age of 63. Having served 32 years with honor and distinction as a Florida Highway Patrol Trooper, his family decided to establish the David H. Brierton, Jr. memorial scholarship fund with the American Association of State Troopers. Through establishing a scholarship fund the Brierton’s were able to memorialize their loved one and help a young adult seeking to gain a higher education.

AAST would like to thank the Brierton family and the other families who have started scholarship funds in their loved ones names.

If you would like to start a scholarship fund or donate to Colonel Brierton’s or one of our other memorial scholarships, please contact Jamie Roufa at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call the office at (800)-765-5456, ext 202.      

                                                                                         Brierton flag presentation 2023                                      Brierton flag presentation 2. 2023

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OSP rescues eagle with injured wing seen hopping down road

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January 4, 2023

Oregon State Police shared photos last week after a trooper responded to reports of an eagle with an injured wing.

It happened last Thursday near Halsey, north of Eugene.

OSP said the eagle had been hopping down the road. When a trooper arrived, it hopped into the trees.

The trooper was able to capture it and take it to a local wildlife rehabilitation center in the backseat of a patrol car.Line

California Highway Patrol chips in for Christmas

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Lts. Chris and Gina Noble of the Salvation Army recently recognized the outstanding efforts of the California Highway Patrol. Public Information Officer Aaron Maurer, other officers and staff, and the talented team of volunteers spent eight days and a total of 72 hours outside of Walmart collecting toys for kids in our community. They delivered the donated gifts to The Salvation Army for teens, Oasis Family Resource Center for kinders, High Desert Women’s Center for families in the safety shelter, and the Trona Fire Department for their event last weekend. The team even shopped at the end of each donation day with all monies that were collected in their buckets, which went to help fulfill the wish list of toys and gifts for the harder to shop for teenagers.

"We are most grateful for their dedicated service every day, and all the more at Christmastime," said Gina.Line

Alabama man helps save state trooper after tornado sent trees crashing down on their vehicles.

Alabama man helps save state trooper after tornado sent trees crashing down on their vehicles pic1Alabama man helps save state trooper after tornado sent trees crashing down on their vehicles pic2Alabama man helps save state trooper after tornado sent trees crashing down on their vehicles pic3Alabama man helps save state trooper after tornado sent trees crashing down on their vehicles pic4Alabama man helps save state trooper after tornado sent trees crashing down on their vehicles pic5

January 14, 2023         

The tornado warning arrived in Alexander City, Alabama, at 1:25 pm CT. Fifty-six-year-old cattle farmer Greg Jones saw sun, clouds, sprinkles of rain. Little did he know that within moments, he would escape death. Little did he know that he would soon help save the life of an Alabama state trooper.

Greg Jones loves his 2008 white Dodge pickup truck. His father gifted him the truck in 2020 with only 71,000 miles on the odometer, the truck is a trusted friend. It was Thursday afternoon at about 1:45 when Greg drove down Elkahatchee Road in Alex City. The wind seemed to be picking up.

Greg Jones has never been afraid to get his hands dirty. He loves farming, and his cows, horses and pigs bring him joy. Greg’s sons Josh and Ryan are always nearby, ready to help. Just like they helped Greg on Elkahatchee Road.

Greg Jones slowed down as he approached Cedar Creek Road.

The sound from outside sounded different, eerie, in fact. An Alabama state trooper passed by and Greg looked in his rearview mirror. State Trooper Jake Smith flashed his blue lights and pulled a U-turn, as he heard the sound, too.

It happened so quickly. The huge tree smashed on top of the roof of Trooper Smith’s cruiser, smashing him down into his seat. Shattered glass everywhere. Within seconds, it was Greg Jones’ turn.

Four trees, five trees, perhaps more. Greg Jones the country boy cried out as the sharp pain in his back burned like a hot iron. His beloved Dodge pick-up truck was a loss. His life nearly was, too.

Through the glass shards, Greg Jones crawled out of his truck through the back window-he could barely stand, as the pain was unbearable. But when Greg Jones glanced to his right and saw a state trooper's car smashed like an accordion? The cattle farmer knew exactly what to do.

“I tried to pull the cruiser’s door open, but it was stuck,” Greg said Friday from his UAB Hospital bed. “I prayed and took a deep breath, placing my feet on the police cruiser. I pulled as hard as I could, but I was in so much pain. Finally, I pulled the trooper out of his car.”

It was moments later when Josh and Ryan Jones pulled up near the scene — they happened to be driving on Elkahatchee Road, too.

“It was a mess,” Josh said. “It took us 20 minutes to navigate through debris to reach my dad. Both dad and Trooper Smith were taken to Russell Medical Center in Alexander City."

Late Thursday night, Greg was transferred to UAB Hospital with a broken back — his 11th and 12th vertebrae were shot.

And now for the rest of the story.

Just prior to Greg’s departure to Birmingham, the cattle farmer looked up to see two people walk into his Alex City hospital room. Standing before him were Trooper Jake Smith and his wife Megan.

“Trooper Smith suffered some minor injuries, but he still wanted to check on me and thank me for helping him,” Greg said.

Greg Jones is going through some tests today in Birmingham before UAB doctors determine his future care. In the meantime, Greg wants us to know that he considers it a miracle that he and Trooper Smith are alive.

“I am a person of faith,” Greg said. “We both could have been killed, but the Lord was looking out for both of us. I have thanked the Lord many times since yesterday.”

Greg Jones is hoping for a bright 2023. He’s very sad that his trusty Dodge pickup truck is a total loss.

"You can consider me riderless,” Greg said. “I don’t have the money to buy a new truck, but I’ll try to do my best to save money.”

The cattle farmer is hoping his back can be repaired so he can get back to work. Until then, he’s thrilled that Trooper Smith is OK, and he’s thankful that two lives were spared on a Thursday afternoon.

Two lives spared, thanks to teamwork and faith.

Two lives spared, after what is an unforgettable story that can now be told:

The Miracle On Elkahatchee Road.Line

ARIZONA STATE TROOPER ACADEMY CLASS 558 GRADUATION

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January 12, 2023

Congratulations to Class 558, our newest Arizona State Troopers! Colonel Hunter addressed the 27 graduates, presented their badges and read them the Oath of Office during their graduation ceremony in Mesa.Line

Pennsylvania State Police Welcomes 102 New Troopers

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Dec 28, 2022

Harrisburg, PA – Colonel Robert Evanchick, commissioner of the Pennsylvania State Police, announced that 102 cadets have graduated from the Pennsylvania State Police Academy. The class was the 165th to graduate from the academy in Hershey since it opened in 1960.

Colonel Evanchick told the cadets they have been given the tools needed to succeed. He said it is now up to them to apply what they have learned.

“I ask you to never compromise yourself or your fellow troopers, and always maintain your honor and integrity,” said Evanchick. “I have full faith in your abilities and devotion to protect and serve the residents and visitors of this commonwealth.”

Six cadets received special awards and recognition during today’s ceremony at Bishop McDevitt High School in Dauphin County:

Cody J. Dugan received the Ronald M. Sharpe Leadership Award for exemplifying the qualities of leadership;

Cole J. Zapf received the John K. Schafer Memorial Award for the highest combined score on a series of physical skills tests;

Casey L. Ward received the American Legion Award for all-around academic, physical, ethical, and moral qualifications;

Gage T. Fischer received the Daniel F. Dunn High Scholastic Award for the highest level of academic achievement in the class;

Kyle J. Morton received the Colonel Paul J. Chylak Memorial Driver Proficiency Award for the highest proficiency in driver safety training;

Ryan G. Reilly received the Sergeant Charles B. Gesford High Pistol Award for the highest score on the department’s pistol qualification course.

The new troopers will report to the following stations on Jan. 3:

Troop B, Belle Vernon
Cameron K. Allmendinger
 
Troop B, Uniontown
Tyler E. Barry
Jesse J. Gillespie
Jeremy R. Miller
Jordan L. Miller
Jenna Mulet
Alexander A. Nemec
Derek D. Richards
 
Troop B, Waynesburg
Bo H. Ricci
Mina L. Tomovich Thompson
 
Troop C, Clarion
Brandon E. Hoffman
 
Troop C, Clearfield
Joseph DiPietro IV
Alex T. Verne
 
Troop C, Lewis Run
Rex E. Martin Jr.
Kyle J. Morton
Joshua M. Perkins
 
Troop C, Marienville
Caleb A. Baxter
Dylan R. Cyphert
 
Troop C, Punxsutawney
Gary J. Evans
 
Troop C, Ridgway
Kaelie A. Fox
Brendan D. Laird
Joseph A. Tommelleo
 
Troop D. Kittanning
Anthony D. Bertoluzzi
Joseph J. Daransky
Andrew J. Dindinger
 
Troop D. New Castle
Vincent G. Buonpane
 
Troop E, Corry
George D. Dufala III
Elijah M. Kaufman
 
Troop F, Coudersport

Gage T. Fischer
Ryan S. Querry
Benjamin D. Sterling
Luke T. Stutsman
 
Troop F, Emporium
Hailee C. McCandless
 
Troop F, Lamar
Dylan N. Krivosky
 
Troop F, Mansfield
Alexander D. Rivers
 
Troop F, Milton
Timothy B. Hummel
Casey L. Ward
 
Troop F, Montoursville
Evan R. Llanso
Christopher S. Moore Jr.
 
Troop H. Carlisle
Christopher L. Cannino
Jason C. Cutshall
Micah P. Wise
 
Troop H, Chambersburg
Antoinette R. Cross
Daniel C. Miley
Catherine A. Miller
Spenser C. Myers
Kevin P. Rhodes
 
Troop H, Gettysburg
Daniel J. Keene
Ryan G. Reilly
Ethan D. Rhoads
 
Troop H, Harrisburg
David C. Jeffers
Trevor N. Royer
Kaitlyn J. Smith
 
Troop H. Lykens
Brandon B. Boyd
Cody J. Dugan
 
Troop H. Newport
Gage J. Boreman
 
Troop J, Avondale
Andrew J. Bernier
Chandler B. Melchior
Daquan A. Worley
 
Troop J, Embreeville
Cole J. Zapf
 
Troop J, Lancaster
Melissa S. Brett
Joshua I. Croyle
Ryan J. Kalinich
Blaize A. Raisner
 
Troop J, York
Matthew T. Anderson Jr.
Kirsten E. Deck
Ethan I. Healey
Jesse R. Huber
Frank C. Montecalvo III
Joseph C. Moore
Mark A. Stephens Jr.
Parker M. Wallace
 
Troop K. Media
Marie E. Haydak
David S. Milligan
Tyler W. Moyer
Jose A. Russi
Joseph A. Sivo
 
Troop K, Philadelphia
David S. Litovsky
Nicholas P. Nowak
Glenn W. Seymour Jr.
 
Troop L, Jonestown
McKenzy A. Keener
Mark A. Mlynek
 
Troop L, Reading

Michael J. Bozym
David R. Piestrak
Ethan P. Shane
 
Troop L, Schuylkill Haven

Cole W. Weil
 
Troop M, Bethlehem
Raheem O. Ford
Andres F. Orozco-Castillo
Michael J. Stasko Jr.
Tydus J. Winstead
 
Troop M, Dublin
David M. Rybicki
Julian T. Stires
 
Troop M, Fogelsville
Anthony M. Chidiac
Caleb D. Stoeckmann
Michael Torres
 
Troop N, Stroudsburg
Richard A. Grippi
Dylan M. Walck
 
Troop P, Towanda
Austin J. Altemus
Santino J. Alunni
Colton B. Babcock
Alexander K. Gregoire
Logan J. Knapp
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Tempe police chief named next director of Arizona Department of Public Safety

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January 2023

The Arizona Department of Public Safety has found its next director following the retirement of Col. Heston Silbert earlier this month.

Tempe Police Chief Jeff Glover has been named Director of Department of Public Safety

Chief Glover began his career with the Tempe Police Department in October of 1999. After serving the department in a variety of capacities, on October 12, 2020, he was appointed as Chief of Police of the Tempe Police Department.

Glover holds a bachelor’s degree in Education from Northern Arizona University, and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration through the University of Phoenix.

Glover is a graduate of the FBI National Academy Command School.

Chief Glover will begin his new position in mid-February, but an exact date hasn’t been announced.Line

Virginia State troopers rescue dog on Capital Beltway in Fairfax

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Jan 15, 2023

FAIRFAX COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Virginia State Police troopers, with help from local animal protection officers, rescued a dog from Interstate 495 in Fairfax County and got him back home safely.

According to police, on the evening of Saturday, Jan. 14, troopers were made aware that a dog had gotten loose in the southern area of the Beltway in Fairfax near Alexandria. With the help of an alert driver, the troopers were able to find the dog and get him into one of their cruisers.

After rescuing the dog from the Beltway, the troopers waited for Fairfax County Animal Protection officers to arrive and get him back home safely.Line