North Dakota Highway Patrol troopers raising awareness for railroad crossings

NDHP Troopers regarding trains

North Dakota Highway Patrol troopers occasionally ride on school buses in order to catch drivers who go around buses that are stopped with their lights flashing. It's an effort to protect children. Now, they're riding on trains for a similar reason. Before the sun comes up, officers begin positioning themselves not on the roads, but on the tracks as Railway Patrol. "What we're working on is just the enforcement aspect and raising awareness just for railway crossing and importance of minding the horn, the signals, and just being more aware of the train," said Sgt Ryan Duletski, NDHP. As part of the Troopers on a Train program, one patrolman rides a locomotive as a spotter, looking for drivers trying to make unsafe track crossings. That citation carries a $50 fine, but law enforcement says money isn't the issue. "Approximately every four hours in the United States, a vehicle or a pedestrian is involved in a collision with a train. We should always expect a train and look both directions. Trains can go on any track in either direction," said Kathy Zander, Operation Lifesaver state coordinator. At least 200 people have died in accidents at highway-rail crossings every year since the U.S. Department of Transportation began tracking that data in 1980. "Something that maybe people don't understand is just how fast the train is actually coming or just that they should be more mindful of it. If somebody sees a train and things that they can beat it, you might not be able to because the speed is actually higher than what you think it might be," Duletski said. Law enforcement says the number of deaths are declining. The train and chase vehicle took a three-hour-trip from Mandan to Eldridge. Fortunately, law enforcement didn't find any law-breakers along the route, so they didn't hand out any citations. The Highway Patrol says it's best not to take your chances when a train is approaching.



Kentucky State Police trooper holds 'fussy' baby so mom can eat

KSP Trooper holding baby

A Kentucky State Trooper is receiving praise after lending a helping hand to a mom at a restaurant.  According to a Facebook post, a woman was standing up to eat because her son was fussy.  KSP Trooper Aaron Hampton, of Post 3 in Bowling Green, asked the woman if he could hold the baby so she could eat.  The post said the baby doesn't like strangers but went to Hampton cooing and smiling.



Nebraska State Police receives national "Best Looking Cruiser" Award


NSP Winner of Best Looking Cruiser Contest


Nebraska State Police Receives National “Best Looking Cruiser” Award

Yesterday, October 3, the American Association of State Troopers presented the award for its “Best Looking Cruiser” contest to the Nebraska State Patrol (NSP).  “It’s humbling to receive this award on behalf of the Nebraska State Patrol,” said Colonel John Bolduc, Superintendent of the Nebraska State Patrol.  “Special thanks to Trooper Zost for just taking advantage of an opportunity when he was out doing his job.”  NSP won the national contest earlier this year based on the votes of law enforcement supporters throughout the United States.  The NSP photo featured the cruiser of Trooper Clint Zost, parked near Highway 75 in southeast Nebraska as a tornado touched down in a field nearby.  “If you look at the photo, everybody thought that that tornado was photoshopped, but it’s what troopers do every day.  He was out doing his job,” said John Bagnardi, of the American Association of State Troopers.  “This was viewed 90,000 times per day on our website.  The exposure for the Nebraska State Patrol was fabulous.”  The annual contest features state and highway patrols from across the entire United States.  The top 13 agencies are then featured in the AAST “Best Looking Cruiser” Calendar for the following year.  In the 2020 calendar, the Nebraska State Patrol cruiser photo graces the cover of the calendar and the month of January.  “As troopers, we try to represent the agency very well.  This just goes to show that we’re not just out there writing traffic tickets.  We’re not just taking people to jail.  We’re also out there helping the public,” said Trooper Clint Zost, who captured the winning photo.  “Our goal is to save a life and we had the opportunity that day to make sure that the emergency sirens were activated.”  The AAST supports the families of state troopers nationwide in a variety of ways, including support provided to the families of troopers killed in the line of duty.  Proceeds from the Cruiser Calendar go to the AAST Foundation, which financially supports those missions.



Massachusetts State Police Lieutenant passes away after nearly 45 years on the force

Mass SP Lt 45 years of service passes

State Police Detective Lieutenant William Coulter was aghast as a younger trooper in the late ’80s and early ’90s, when he worked with Boston police to combat gang violence and saw parents take extreme measures to shield their children from stray bullets.  Some parents even had their children sleep in empty bathtubs, and Coulter resolved at the time to do whatever he could to fight what had become an epidemic of gang violence in the city. “Being the good-hearted, good-natured person that he was, that bothered him,” said Robert Merner, a former Boston police superintendent who now leads the force in Portsmouth, N.H.  “He’d say, ‘Nobody’s children should have to live like this’.  He was one of those soldiers that put his mind to getting it to change.”  Merner spoke to the Globe on Tuesday, a day after State Police announced that the 68-year-old Coulter, an avid marathon runner who also did extensive work for the Cops for Kids With Cancer charity, had died after a brief illness.  “He was just a consummate professional, with a tremendous sense of humor,” Merner said.  “He’s going to be missed and the two words you would describe him with are ‘loyal’ and a ‘friend.’  If Billy was your friend, you didn’t need many others.”  Coulter, the State Police statement said, joined the force in 1974 and “served in a variety of postings, including many years spent as an investigator and combating gang violence.  At the time of his passing he was assigned to the Division of Investigative Services at General Headquarters.”  Merner’s words were echoed by retired State Police Trooper Steve Byron, board president of the State Police Museum & Learning Center in Grafton, a private nonprofit dedicated to preserving the history of the agency. Coulter, Byron said, also served on the board and helped the museum acquire a number of antique cruisers, of which Coulter had a detailed knowledge.  “He was just a source of expertise that we hadn’t had” before, Byron said.  “He was a very active volunteer for years, going back to 2010 or 2008.  He gave us all kinds of time and expertise.”  And on the job, Byron said, Coulter was “totally dedicated.”  “From the time he woke up in the morning until the time he went to bed at night, he thought about how to do his job better and make the State Police better,” Byron said, adding that Coulter, because of his supervisory position, also enthusiastically took to mentoring younger troopers.  State Police spoke highly of Coulter.  “His passing leaves a tremendous void within the MSP family and beyond,” the agency said in a statement.  “Detective Lieutenant Coulter was widely known in the law enforcement and charitable worlds, and, over the span of a State Police career that would have reached 45 years this November, earned the unwavering respect and admiration of countless people from all walks of life.”  He previously survived cancer and “more than once defied and overcame a dire prognosis,” the State Police statement said.  “Having done so, he was fiercely devoted to using his own experience to help and support a great many fellow patients, both inside and outside the Department.  Byron on Tuesday marveled that his friend was able to continue his work and volunteer efforts for so long despite his health challenges.  “God’s been holding a spot for him in heaven for 25 years,” Byron said.  “Until now, he beat the odds every time.”  And he did it with remarkable grace.  Time and again, State Police said, Coulter “shared his hope, strength, and advice with countless people battling cancer whom he had met or heard about — many of whom he sought out after learning of their diagnosis.  As well, he was one of the leading forces behind the Cops for Kids With Cancer charity, which provides financial support to families of children receiving cancer care.  His energy and dedication to this part of his life’s journey knew no limits.”  Retired State Police Lieutenant Tom Grenham, a Cops for Kids board member, said Coulter was instrumental in helping to raise funds the group disburses to families of children with cancer.  Grenham noted that his own teenage daughter is a leukemia survivor and said, “Billy’s been with me every step of the way.”



Best Looking Cruiser contest winner

Media Advisory: American Association of State Troopers to Present “Best Looking Cruiser” Award to NSP

October 2, 2019 (Lincoln, Neb.) — Tomorrow, the American Association of State Troopers (AAST) will present the Nebraska State Patrol (NSP) with the award for “Best Looking Cruiser” following a national vote earlier this year.

The event will be held at 10:00 a.m. Thursday on Centennial Mall directly north of the Nebraska State Capitol, 1445 K St, Lincoln, NE, 68508. Media are welcome to attend. Colonel John Bolduc will be joined by representatives from the AAST and Trooper Clint Zost, who took the winning photo.

Earlier this year, NSP was voted the “Best Looking Cruiser” in an online contest organized by AAST. The annual contest features state and highway patrols from across the entire United States. The top 13 agencies are then featured in the AAST “Best Looking Cruiser” Calendar for the following year. In the 2020 calendar, the Nebraska State Patrol cruiser photo graces the cover of the calendar and the month of January.

The AAST supports the families of state troopers nationwide throughout the nation through a variety of ways, including support provided to the families of troopers killed in the line of duty. Proceeds from the Cruiser Calendar go to the AAST Foundation, which financially supports those missions.



New York State Police issue 102 tickets during construction zone enforcement

NYSP Construction Zone tickets

New York State troopers dressed as highway workers issued 102 tickets over the past two weeks during three separate "Operation Hardhat" operations in Onondaga County.  "Operation Hardhat" is intended to highlight the importance of driving safely through construction and work zones, state police said in a press release.  "The success of 'Operation Hardhat' is imperative — it protects our transportation workers and raises awareness to the serious issue of work zone safety," State Department of Transportation Commissioner Marie Therese Dominguez said in the release.  Of the 102 tickets that were issued by the troopers, 62 were for speeding, 16 were for failure to wear seatbelts and 20 were for other VTL infractions.  The other tickets were for cell phone use, driving while intoxicated and inspections.  Fines for speeding are doubled in work zones and two or more speeding violations in a work zone can result in the suspension of an individual's driver's license.  The troopers, from Troop D, patrolled active DOT work zones along the Route 5 Bypass in Camillus, Route 20 in Nedrow and I-690 in Dewitt.  More operations will be rolled out in the coming months.



Illinois State Police trooper saves woman's life with bone marrow transplant

 Illinois SP Trooper is donor

A simple donation making a big difference in one woman’s life. Illinois State Police Trooper Jeremy Carnes said he expected this decision to change the life of the woman he donated to but he didn't expect it to also change his. "Man, I can't even put it into words," said Carnes. He smiles when talking about a process that some may deem scary. But for Trooper Carnes, it has shown him a new side to life. "It started when I was up in Chicago," said Carnes. While on a trip, he made a simple decision that changed and intertwined two separate lives. "I saw the Be The Match booth there signing people up for the registry," said Carnes. Now he knows danger and sees it every day. He has seen the same headlines as everyone else that show friends and fellow troopers dying from things out of their control while serving the state. But signing up to save someone from danger was never a question for Carnes. "It was probably one of the easier decisions I've ever had to make," he said. When the call came that he might be a match and then that he was a bone marrow match, it hit him all at once what was about to happen. "The surge of emotion like I really didn't know, I didn't have any words to express what I was feeling," said Carnes. Now, he has never met the woman whose life he saved. Right now, him and Kathryn are only united by a bone marrow transplant and a handful of emails. But that changed on Saturday night. "To be able to meet in this fashion at a major event like this, pretty blessed to say the least,” said Carnes. Both will be attending the Be The Match gala in Minneapolis, which is something Carnes said has been months in the making. "I'm excited to finally meet her in real life. Excited to see Kathryn as healthy as can be," he said. An excitement often seen in moments that are life changing. Kathryn has been fighting an auto immune disease and Carnes said she is already noticing incredible improvements, including improving arthritis to the point that she is ready to participate in a 5K.

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Florida Highway Patrol trooper killed in a vehicle crash

FHP Trooper killed in crash September 2019


Trooper Tracy Vickers was killed in a vehicle crash on Route 408, near Conway Road, at approximately 5:50 am.  His patrol car struck the rear of a truck carrying construction equipment and became trapped underneath it.  Trooper Vickers was a U.S. Navy veteran and had served with the Florida Highway Patrol for four years.



AAST Award to State Trooper

September 25, 2019

 Good evening President Barbier,

Thank you for the support of the American Association of State Troopers, Inc., in recognizing the State Trooper who scored the highest at the NRA National Police Shooting Competition recently held in Pearl, Mississippi.

Trooper Rupert Pope with the South Carolina Highway Patrol was presented with a Glock .43 engraved with the AAST logo.

AAST also awarded sponsors Brian and Kelly Wheeler with Southern Connection Police Supplies the “Spirit of the Trooper” certificate recognizing their contributions and support of state troopers.

Glen Hoyer, Director of the Law Enforcement Division for the National Rifle Association, thanked the AAST for supporting State Troopers competing in this year’s event.

 Lt. Colonel Thomas E. Tuggle

Mississippi Highway Patrol


2019 AAST Award for national police shooting campetition




Montana Highway Patrol welcomes 13 new troopers

Montana HP September 2019 graduation

Montana Highway Patrol commissioned 13 new troopers at the 66th Advanced Academy Graduation ceremony.  Members of this graduating class come from all over the state of Montana, California, Minnesota and New York.  Chief Deputy Attorney General Jon Bennion addressed the graduates at the event, which took place at the Delta Marriott Hotel in Helena.  In his remarks, Bennion thanked the graduates for choosing a life of public service. “Montana Highway Patrol troopers may wear green and tan rather than blue, but you stand alongside fellow officers from agencies across Montana to form a thin blue line that protects us from dangers seen and unseen.  For that, all of us are deeply grateful for your dedication to community, family, and public safety,” Bennion said.



Montana woman becomes "Honorary State Trooper' for 'running radar' with hair dryer

Montana women uses hairdryer as radar

Montana Highway Patrol has awarded a woman the unofficial title of "honorary state trooper" after she made it her mission to slow down speeding cars by 'running radar' with her hair dryer.  According to CNN, Patti Baumgartner's son tweeted out a picture of his mother sitting in a lawn chair with her hair dryer and tagged Montana State Trooper Noah Pesola.  Pesola tracked down Baumgartner to recognize her efforts with a trooper's badge and hat. 



Oklahoma Highway Patrol has a new Chief

OKHP New Chief 2019

A major with the Oklahoma Highway Patrol will soon be the department’s chief.  On Tuesday, Oklahoma Department of Public Safety Commissioner John Scully announced that he is promoting Major Brent Sugg to be the 28th Chief of the Oklahoma Highway Patrol.  Sugg first joined the OHP in 1999.  Before he was a trooper, he was an officer with the Norman Police Department.  During his 20 year career with the OHP, Sugg has served as the commander of several divisions.  “Chief Sugg brings professional and proven leadership to the Oklahoma Highway Patrol and he is widely respected throughout the agency,” said Commissioner Scully.  “I look forward to working beside Chief Sugg as he takes command of the Oklahoma Highway Patrol as the 28th Chief of the OHP.”  Recently, Sugg graduated from the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Virginia.  “I’ve known Brent Sugg for nearly 20 years and he is a man of character and righteousness and I know him to be extremely competent and fair,” said Secretary of Public Safety Chip Keating.  “I look forward to him working alongside Commissioner Scully in advancing Governor Stitt’s vision of Oklahoma being a top 10 state.  I thank him for his continued service to our great state.”



Texas DPS trooper recognized nationally for saving stabbing victim

AAST 2019 Trooper of the Year

Texas DPS Corporal Joshua Moer receives the Trooper of the Year award from Keith Barbier, president of the American Association of State Troopers, for his actions to save Kaylea Butts after she was kidnapped and stabbed multiple times on April 26, 2018.(Photo: TORIN HALSEY/TIMES RECORD NEWS)


An April day in 2018 could have turned out much differently for Kaylea Renee Butts had she not crossed paths with Corp. Joshua Moer, a Texas Department of Public Safety trooper recognized Tuesday for saving her life.  Butts, of Norman, Okla., had been kidnapped and driven through country and main roads and across the state line, stabbed multiple times and lost five pints of blood by the time the horrific episode ended in the death of Anthony L. Carter, her kidnapper.  Moer lead a team of law enforcement agencies that pursued Carter over 35 miles, reaching speeds up to 150 miles an hour into Wichita County.  After spike strips halted the chase, Carter chased Butts from the car and began stabbing her.  From 40 yards away, Moer aimed his handgun and shot at Carter 11 times.  All 11 shots hit Carter, according to the American Association of State Troopers.  During a ceremony Tuesday at The Forum, the national organization recognized Moer's heroism.  The American Association of State Troopers recognized Corporal Moers’ heroic actions by naming him the 2019 Trooper of the Year.  "In this highly stressful situation, Corp. Moer displayed leadership and courage that saved the life of Ms. Butts," according to the association's announcement.  "Corp. Moer maintained his composure and relied on his training while using sound judgement.  After the event, Corp. Moer showed compassion, but knew he had based his actions and decision on a deep reverence for human life."



Florida Highway Patrol welcomes 37 new troopers

 FHP September 2019 graduation

Friday, September 6, the 142nd basic recruit class of the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) graduated from the FHP Training Academy. These 37 Troopers join the more than 1,900 Troopers who patrol Florida’s roads each day to provide safety and security to residents and visitors. Members of the 142nd basic recruit class went through 28 weeks of intense physical and classroom training covering topics including defensive tactics, law, vehicle operations, firearms and first aid. While at the FHP Training Academy, recruits also participated in several community service activities, including blood drives and volunteering to help those living with developmental disabilities. “The sacrifice and commitment these Troopers have made today is truly commendable,” said FLHSMV Executive Director Terry L. Rhodes. “Florida is safer, and our communities are more enriched by the value they bring.” “I am grateful that these men and women have answered the call to public service for our great state,” said Colonel Gene S. Spaulding, Director of the Florida Highway Patrol. “I commend them for their dedication and welcome them into the ranks of the Florida Highway Patrol.” Upon reporting to their duty stations, the new Troopers will be placed with a certified Field Training Officer (FTO). Troopers will work in tandem with their FTO for 10 to 14 weeks prior to being released to solo duty.



Idaho State Police trooper almost hit by fuel tanker

idaho trooper almost hit by fuel truck

Move.  Over.  That's the message Idaho State Police is relaying after the agency posted video of a near-miss involving an Idaho State Police trooper and a fuel truck along Interstate-84.  The Aug. 30 incident took place near Jerome when a trooper stopped along the interstate to remove a large piece of tire tread off the roadway.  The driver of the fuel truck wasn't prepared for the slowdown of vehicles behind the trooper's car and made a last-second decision and went off the road to avoid hitting the vehicles in front of him, ISP says.  "This is why it's so important to slow down when you see emergency vehicles on the roadway," ISP said on Twitter.  "We're happy to report the trooper is OK."  The driver was shaken up, remorseful and apologetic, ISP says.  The trooper did not issue a citation.

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