Maine State Police Detective dies after being struck by vehicle tire
Detective Ben Campbell was struck and killed by a vehicle tire while assisting at the scene of a disabled vehicle on I-95 south of Coldbrook Road in Hampden at 7:30 am. He came across a vehicle that had slid off the interstate due to inclement weather and stopped to provide assistance. As he was standing outside of his department vehicle two wheels of a passing logging truck separated from the vehicle. One of the wheels struck Detective Campbell. Detective Campbell was transported to Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor where he succumbed to his injuries. Detective Campbell had served with the Maine State Police for nine years and was assigned to the Polygraph Unit. He is survived by his wife and 6-month-old son.
Illinois State trooper's daughter shares the message 'move over for my dad'
April 1st is Illinois State Trooper Day. Illinois State Police say the day is meant to honor the men and women of the ISP, especially the three troopers, Christopher Lambert, Brooke Jones-Story, and Gerald Ellis, who lost their lives this year. The three troopers were killed by drivers not obeying Illinois Scott's Law. The law requires drivers to move over or slow down for emergency vehicles with flashing lights on the shoulder of the road. After seeing the recent tragedies, 12-year-old Lucy Kuelper decided to use social media to push the law. Lucy's father, John Kuelper, has been an Illinois State Trooper for 17 years. She decided to create the "Move Over Project" to help keep her dad safe on the job. "I thought that it would be helpful to spread the word," Kuelper said. "The page says 'you should move over so no one else gets hurt,' and I just hope every day my dad, or everyone's dad, mom or brother, just comes home safe." The page shares photos of trooper's families while using the hashtag "Move Over For". "We're putting real faces, real families, real pets out there," Lucy's father John Kuelper said. "Saying, that all these people need to come home. It's making an impact and hopefully, it will make a difference." Lucy created the page on Friday, March 29th, and it now has more than 11,000 likes. "I just thought I could help in any way possible," she said." I just took the picture, and I didn't think it was going to go this far." "I'm proud of Lucy for taking this initiative and continuing to spread this message," John said. "Accidents seem to be happening on a more frequent basis. People just have to pay attention, they've got to slow down, they've got to move over. Obey the laws." Lucy said one of her favorite part of the page is reading and sharing the stories of other trooper families. "Some of them are happy stories, but the sad ones just really get to me," Lucy said. "But, I'm glad their stories have been let out." Lucy said she never thought her page would go viral, but she says it already has reached over one million people. The page has received posts from as far as Texas. She says she is happy it has more than 11,000 likes, but hopes this means 11,000 people will move over. "I think if it saved even one life or one person, I think that would be great," she said. The page caused so much attention, Lucy was awarded the State of Illinois Commission Volunteer of the Week.
West Virginia State Police force celebrates 100th anniversary
The West Virginia State Police force will celebrate its 100th anniversary on Sunday. To honor the department’s century of service, Gov. Jim Justice spoke at a special ceremony at the state Culture Center Friday afternoon to honor members of the force and the 41 members who died in the line of duty. Families of the fallen troopers sat in the first two rows, and Justice spoke directly to them and thanked them for their family’s sacrifice. “I ask that every way in the world that the good Lord above makes life one step better, and let’s you know beyond a shadow of a doubt, nor are they forgotten,” Justice said to them. “They aren’t anything but appreciated.” West Virginia’s State Police is reportedly the fourth oldest such police force in the country. Randall Reid-Smith, the commissioner for the state’s Department of Arts, Culture and History, hosted Friday’s event. He said that he and his staff started planning for the 100th anniversary as soon as the 90th year anniversary had ended. Outside in the lobby of the Culture Center, state curation officials created a special display to honor the department’s long history. The majority of the pieces on display are on loan from the State Police Museum in Institute. The exhibit will be on display in the State Theatre gallery through October. In honor of the anniversary, Blenko Glass created 100 copies of a special blown glass piece. The piece is a forest green replica of the hat that troopers wear every day. First Lady Cathy Justice said the piece could be used as a bowl or could just be used for decorative purposes. Justice noted his close connection to the State Police. He said the troopers who are assigned to his security detail are professional, and he doesn’t want to take them for granted. “So often they are underappreciated and underpaid,” Justice said. “We need to correct all of that, because what is the very first thing we call when we’re afraid or we’re in trouble?” Jan Cahill, superintendent of the State Police, attended the event and thanked the family members of his troopers for their support. Our organization started back in 1919,” Cahill said. “We started with a lot of young men who had just served their country in World War I. Just prior to their enlistment in the State Police force, they were told, ‘Oh, by the way, when you show up your first day bring in your own forest green uniform.’” Back then, troopers road around the state on horseback. Troopers still wear forest green uniforms to this day, but Cahill said the State Police force has grown by leaps and bounds since then. “Today’s West Virginia State Police Training Academy provides training to more than 5,000 policemen and women throughout the state,” Cahill said. “The nationally accredited forensic lab provides analysis for 800 different agencies and departments across the state, free of charge. It’s a modern State Police.”
Illinois State Police trooper killed in line of duty
Trooper Gerald Ellis was killed in a vehicle collision while on patrol. He was on patrol traveling westbound on I-94 in Green Oaks when a wrong-way driver traveling eastbound in the westbound lanes struck Trooper Ellis head-on. Trooper Ellis was taken to Advocate Condell Medical Center where he died from his injuries. Trooper Ellis was a U.S. military veteran. He had served with the Illinois State Police for 11 years and was assigned to District 15 in Downers Grove. He is survived by his wife, two daughters, parents, and brother.
36 new troopers join the Maryland State Police
As state officials and proud family members looked on, trooper candidates raised their right hands today and took an oath to serve and protect the people of Maryland as they officially became state troopers during the graduation ceremony for the Maryland State Police 148th Trooper Candidate Class. The 36 members of Trooper Candidate Class 148 have just completed 27 weeks of a residential police training academy, known as one of most intense and comprehensive state police training programs in the country. During six months of strict discipline and a demanding schedule, the trooper candidates received instruction in criminal and traffic laws, emergency care, emergency driving, physical training, and scenario-based training that included de-escalation and conflict resolution. “It is an honor and a privilege to be here today among so many of Maryland’s Finest, and to have this opportunity to congratulate the 36 newest members of what Governor Hogan and I believe is the finest State Police organization in the entire country,” said Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford. “It is a testament to the kind of men and women here this morning, that even though you knew that the risks would be many and the accolades often too few, you have chosen to join this proud fellowship of MSP troopers.” “For the past 98 years, those who came before you built the tradition and reputation of providing outstanding law enforcement services the Maryland State Police is known for,” Colonel William Pallozzi reminded the graduates. “I urge you to daily remember our core values of integrity, fairness and service as you fulfill your duties as public servants who are dedicated to providing selfless service to our citizens.” In January, Class 148 participated in the Police Plunge for Special Olympics and jumped into the Chesapeake Bay after raising nearly $16,000. Class 148 finished first in fundraising among other participating police academy classes. The president of Class 148 is Jacob Rideout, from the Eastern Shore. He previously served in the US Marine Corps and was a deputy with the Caroline County Sheriff’s Office for six years. Among the members of the class, nine have prior military experience, three previously worked in law enforcement or corrections and five were Maryland State Police cadets. Three are certified paramedics and will be transferring to the Aviation Command following their field training. Nineteen of the recruits have college degrees and another 15 are enrolled in the concurrent Associate of Arts program with Frederick Community College and have been obtaining their degrees as they attend the Academy. Following a brief period of leave, the new troopers will report to barracks across Maryland to begin eight weeks of practical instruction with field training troopers. Upon successful completion of that training, they will be permitted to patrol alone.
Illinois State trooper killed in the line of duty
Trooper Brooke Jones-Story was struck and killed by a tractor-trailer while conducting a traffic stop on U.S. Route 20 near State Route 75 in Freeport. She had stopped another tractor-trailer and was conducting an inspection of it when another truck ran off the road, striking her patrol car before striking her and the truck she was inspecting. The driver of the truck that struck her was charged with several traffic citations. Trooper Jones-Story had served with the Illinois State Police for 12 years and was assigned to District 16 in Pecatonica. She is survived by her husband.
Florida Highway Patrol trooper shoots a GPS tracker onto a fleeing car during chase
A Florida Highway Patrol trooper darted a small, soda can-sized tracking device on the back of a fleeing minivan during a chase late last Wednesday night, and the cruiser's dashcam footage makes the slick deployment look like something out of a Batman film. Kip Thomas, the minivan's 26-year-old driver and recipient of the sticky probe, allegedly initiated a high-speed chase with New Port Richie police officers in Pasco County, just north of Tampa. Police were pursuing Thomas for several felonies, including alleged aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer. As the pursuit carried over county lines, an FHP trooper equipped with a GPS dart system named "StarChase" joined in and tailed the suspect's Kia minivan. The trooper activated the system, according to the report, and positioned his car behind the suspect's going roughly 60 miles per hour. The StarChase software gave a go-ahead to "fire," the report said, and the officer launched from between the cruiser's headlights a soda can-sized GPS tracker, or a "tag," that stuck snugly next to the suspect's license plate. "I got the vehicle with StarChase," the trooper could be heard saying in the footage. "I got the mapping program up on my end, so I can see real-time where he's going." The cadre of police cars eased off Thomas as he sped off – a protocol when an officer deploys one of the probes. The state trooper eventually sped ahead of Thomas to roll out a spike mat on a state toll road not far from where he was later arrested. The GPS tag allowed the interagency headquarters in Tampa to track Thomas' vehicle before he was arrested, and like most incidents, it's only deployed when physically ramming the suspect's car is too risky and dangerous. "That's textbook. That's the way we want it to work," FHP spokesperson Kim Montes told the Orlando Weekly. Steve Gaskins, FHP's spokesman for the Pasco County area, said that Thursday morning's chase was the second time in the past week his troopers deployed a StarChase tracker successfully. Deploying the high-tech device is seen as a safe alternative to pursuit immobilization technique maneuvers (PITs), where officers attempt to end high-speed chases physically with their patrol cars. PITs are usually carried out by nudging the rear-side of the suspect's vehicle mid-pursuit, causing it to spin out to a stop. But not all highway patrollers have StarChasers. In fact, the north Tampa Florida Highway Patrol – where chases are most common in Florida – is one of a few regions in the state testing StarChaser for instances like Thursday's pursuit.
"We have a very strict policy on the way we can use that," Montes says regarding FHP's use of StarChase. Troopers can't use the GPS tags for surveillance or any intelligence-gathering operations. An officer also wouldn't be able to shoot motorcycles, mopeds or ATVs, the newly formed policy states. While troopers around Orlando aren't equipped with the StarChaser tech, the Orlando Police Department is among the few local law enforcement agencies in Florida that does have the technology.
To watch the video, go to: https://twitter.com/i/status/1109254112556797953
Wyoming Highway Patrol commissions 11 new troopers
The Wyoming Highway Patrol today swore in its 96th class of cadets to troopers. Eleven new troopers will be assigned across the state including one to Jackson. WHP commissioned 11 Cadets to the rank of Trooper upon the completion of their intensive training academy. During their academy, the new Troopers were instructed in a variety of classes including firearms, commercial carrier, physical training, RADAR/LIDAR, emergency vehicle operation, custody and control, crash investigation and other pertinent training. The members of Class 96 that were new to law enforcement participated in over 1,210 hours of academy training. Being a State Trooper for the Wyoming Highway Patrol can be a challenging, yet rewarding career as it takes a special person to become a Wyoming State Trooper. All Troopers take an oath to protect and serve all citizens of this great state with courtesy, professionalism, and integrity as Wyoming’s Troopers represent the agency brand of “Guardians of the Cowboy State.” The new troopers participated in their swearing-in ceremony in front of family and friends at the Wyoming Supreme Court on March 21, 2019. The ceremony marked the 96th graduated class from the Wyoming Highway Patrol Academy.
Illinois State Police trooper hit by semi, 14th to be struck by a motorist this year
An Illinois State Police trooper was seriously injured when he was hit by a semi downstate late Wednesday, bringing to 14 the number of troopers hit by vehicles this year and eclipsing the total for all of last year. The accident took place in Collinsville, about 16 miles from St. Louis, and comes just three days after another trooper was hit on Sunday. Previous years have seen far fewer cases: eight in 2018, 12 in 2017 and five in 2016. The state police were called to Interstate 55 about 10:30 p.m. Wednesday for a crash that occurred when a vehicle left the road and hit a light pole, causing the pole to fall across lanes of the interstate, according to a release from state police. Seven vehicles hit the downed light pole before troopers arrived. The first two troopers at the scene stopped close to the pole, and a trooper in a third squad car parked farther away to give motorists more notice before coming up on the accident scene, state police said. The trooper had gotten out of his car when he and the car were hit by the truck. The trooper was taken to a hospital with serious injuries. Scott’s Law, enacted 20 years ago, requires motorists to slow down and try to move over when they see a parked squad car, fire engine or ambulance with flashing lights, or any vehicle with flashing hazard lights engaged. It was named for a Chicago firefighter who was killed by a drunken driver at a crash site. Violators can face fines up to $10,000 and possible license suspensions. In criminal cases, a driver can receive a more severe sentence for violating Scott’s Law. The first quarter of 2019 has seen a spike in incidents, including the death of Trooper Christopher Lambert, 34, who was hit by a passing motorist in January. State police have stepped up enforcement of Scott’s Law and have sought to raise awareness through social media. Between Jan. 1 and March 6, troopers issued 366 tickets for violations, compared with 138 for the same period last year. For all of 2018, troopers issued 881 citations, according to data provided by the agency.
Maryland State Trooper cadet with cerebral palsy to graduate from police academy
A Maryland State Police trooper candidate will defy odds when he walks across the stage at his police academy Friday. Derek Harper will become third-generation state trooper in his family as his father Sgt. David Harper will be waiting for him at the end of the stage to pin a gold badge on his uniform. His father is a 28-year veteran of the state police. “Sgt. Harper said he never once told Derek he wanted him to become a Maryland state trooper. He said his son first indicated he might want to follow in his father and grandfather’s career choice when he was in middle school,” state police said in a statement. At the age of three, Derek was diagnosed with cerebral palsy that affected his legs. Initially, he had many doctor visits and therapy at Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore. He got shots in his legs and wore braces to help him balance. In 2007, Derek had major surgery on his legs and wore casts for six weeks. Despite the obstacles, Derek’s dad and mom, Sandy, never wanted him to restrict him from trying things. He played T-ball, soccer and ran cross-country in elementary school even in braces. He was a cub scout, Civil Air Patrol, joined band and even attended a boot camp run by military and police officers in Pennsylvania that focused on law enforcement. When Derek graduated from high school in 2016, he passed the physical fitness test and was hired by the Maryland State Police as a cadet. He was assigned to the Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division New Market scale house and passed every physical test cadets received. In Sept. 2018, Derek joined his police academy class. “He has endured the rigors of a six-month residential police training academy that is known as one of the toughest in the country. He enrolled in the concurrent degree program with Frederick Community College and will complete his Associate of Arts degree in criminal justice soon after graduating from the Academy,” the state police said. “He has endured the mental, physical and emotional challenges this intense training has presented him with. He has overcome each one.” Derek’s grandfather was also a state trooper. “I’ll be thinking that’s my little boy, who I had to carry around because he couldn’t walk too far. Now, look how far he’s come,” said Sgt. Harper, when asked what he will be thinking when his son walks across the stage.
Tennessee Highway Patrol rolls out Axon Fleet 2 Cameras to 700 Vehicles
Axon (Nasdaq: AAXN), the global leader in connected public safety technologies, today announced that the Tennessee Highway Patrol will roll out 700 Axon Fleet 2 in-car camera systems backed by the digital data management solution Axon Evidence (Evidence.com). This order was received in the first quarter of 2019 and will ship in multiple phases. “It is absolutely critical for our troopers to have the best equipment available that meets or exceeds our requirements,” says Tennessee Highway Patrol Colonel Dereck Stewart. “I believe that the Axon Fleet 2 in-car video system does just that.” Axon Fleet 2 in-car video systems include a forward-facing and a rear-facing camera Axon is a network of devices, apps and people that helps public safety personnel become smarter and safer. With a mission of protecting life, our technologies give customers the confidence, focus and time they need to keep their communities safe. Our products impact every aspect of a public safety officer's day-to-day experience. We work hard for those who put themselves in harm's way for all of us. To date, there are more than 347,200 software seats booked on the Axon network around the world and more than 213,000 lives and countless dollars have been saved with the Axon network of devices, apps and people. Learn more at www.axon.com or by calling (800) 978-2737.
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Vermont State Police trooper revived after apparent drug exposure during traffic stop
Police say a Vermont State Police trooper who collapsed after apparently being exposed to an opioid-like drug during a traffic stop was revived by fellow troopers who administered the overdose-reversal drug Narcan. Acting Sgt. Brett Flansburg stopped a vehicle for a traffic violation in Leicester late Friday. Flansburg searched the car after a passenger admitted swallowing a small bag of cocaine. He collected a small quantity of heroin, an empty plastic baggie and a syringe. The passenger was taken into custody by other troopers. Flansburg began to feel ill and he collapsed in the parking lot of the New Haven barracks. Other troopers administered two doses of Narcan. He received a third dose on the way to the hospital. Flansburg was later released from the hospital. Detectives are launching a full investigation into the incident and testing is underway to determine what substance made acting Sgt. Brett Flansburg ill. "Now there is a new threat that we're seeing up close: the risk of exposure to powerful drugs that can kill in even tiny amounts," Col. Matthew Birmingham, the head of the state police, said Saturday. "This is so troubling and disconcerting, and it places members of law enforcement at unnecessary risk of possibly losing their lives. " Similar incidents have been reported in other parts of the country in which police officers overdose after accidentally coming into contact with opioid-based drugs.
Indiana State Police seize $3.5 million in drugs during traffic stop
Two Indianapolis men were arrested for dealing marijuana after a traffic stop on Interstate 70 Wednesday morning. A state police trooper stopped a box truck on I-70 eastbound near the Mooresville/Plainfield exit for following too closely. While talking with the men, the trooper detected the aroma of marijuana and searched the vehicle. During that search, the trooper discovered the men were transporting approximately 250 pounds of marijuana and 50,000 vape cartridges filled with THC in the cargo area of the truck. The street value of the marijuana is estimated at $2.5 million, while the vape cartridges are valued at about $1 million.
Michigan State Police trooper saved with Narcan during traffic stop of drug suspect
A Michigan State Trooper was saved with Narcan after coming into contact with a mix of fentanyl and cocaine Wednesday. Troopers were in Lincoln Park, Mich. on a drug bust when at 3:30 p.m. troopers stopped a vehicle in the 800 block of Capitol, assisting the Downriver Area Narcotics Association task force. At some point during vehicle and driver search, one of the troopers came in contact with a cocaine and fentanyl mix. He started to have symptoms consistent with an overdose, according to MSP Lt. Mike Shaw. "The trooper's partner recognized those signs and immediately administered two doses of Narcan," he said. "Troopers keep them in their cruisers at all time. Immediately the trooper started to recover but was taken to the hospital as a precaution." Shaw said that dealing with cocaine and fentanyl can be very dangerous. "The trooper did not even realize he came in contact with the drug," he said. "It can get into your system through your skin, breathing or eyes. Depending on what it’s cut with you can die from an amount small enough to fit on the head of a pin."
Colorado State Patrol trooper killed during historic blizzard
A Colorado State Patrol trooper was killed Wednesday in Weld County when he was struck by a vehicle on Interstate 76. Cpl. Daniel Groves was outside his patrol car checking on a vehicle that had slid off the roadway when he was hit by a 2001 Volvo driven by John Carpenter, 58, of Centennial, the patrol said. Groves, who joined the State Patrol in 2007, was taken to Platte Valley Medical Center in Brighton where he was pronounced dead. Carpenter also was treated at the hospital for minor injuries. The cause of the crash is under investigation but the State Patrol is looking at high speed under poor driving conditions as a possible factor.