2018 Best Looking Cruiser Contest Results
2018 Best Looking Cruiser Contest Results
Congratulations! To the Kentucky State Police for being voted the “2018 America’s Best Looking Cruiser”.
This is the first year the Kentucky State Police has received the honor and will be the cruiser featured on the cover
of the “2019 America’s Best Looking Cruiser Calendar”.
The contest received over 250,000 “likes” and reached over 1 million people. Thank you to everyone who participated
to make this year’s contest a success.
The 2018 top 13 finalists are listed below:
1st Kentucky State Police
2nd Georgia State Patrol
3rd North Carolina State Highway Patrol
4th Ohio State Highway Patrol
5th Tennessee Highway Patrol
6th Alabama Law Enforcement Agency
7th Florida Highway Patrol
8th Delaware State Police
9th Michigan State Police
10th Idaho State Police
11th Texas Department of Public Safety
12th Mississippi Highway Patrol
13th Pennsylvania State Police
The 2019 Calendars will be available to purchase at www.statetroopers.org beginning September 2018.
Watch for the announcement on the AAST Facebook page.
Net proceeds of the calendar sales will benefit the American Association of State Troopers Foundation that provides educational scholarships to dependents of AAST members.
Lone Star Lawmen: Texas Rangers work on area's most challenging cases
A picture of the three Texas Rangers from Larry McMurtry’s novel-turned-TV miniseries Lonesome Dove hangs on a wall in the office of Texas Ranger Brandon Bess in the Liberty County Courthouse. “Which one are you?” Bess is asked. Glancing at the iconic photo, Bess responds, “I would have to say that I would be more like Gus and Ryan is more like Woodrow.” “So, who is Jake Spoon?” he is asked. Sitting across from each other in Bess’ office, Bess and Texas Ranger Ryan Clendennen, both amused at the question, look at each other for an answer. Nobody wants to be Jake Spoon, the Ranger-turned-outlaw. Like the characters in the TV show, the partnership between the two Rangers, assigned to neighboring counties, is one built on trust, friendship and a respect for each other’s strengths. Bess is assigned to Liberty, San Jacinto and Hardin counties while Clendennen’s territory includes Polk, Tyler and Jasper counties. The two Rangers have developed such an ease between them that each automatically knows the responsibilities to assume when investigating crimes. “When we go out to complex murder investigations together, I know Ryan is going to process the crime scene as an expert. He’s going to map it, read the blood and collect evidence,” Bess said. “I am going to start looking at videos, running down the witness list and start collecting all the police officers involved to see what happened before we got there. Then potentially go out and interview witnesses to the case. There is a lot of hard work that goes into it.” The more difficult cases, they say, are the ones that seem simple and straightforward. “When we get a murder case, we stress about it less. We know we will be there for days on end, long hours in a row, but it is what it is. You know that someone is going to jail for it. You just have to identify your suspects,” Bess said. “We stress over the easy cases, like an assault between public officials, because you aren’t sure if a crime has occurred and you have to be certain.” Murder cases involving children, however, are the worst and leave scars, despite the invisible shield that all law enforcement officers seem to possess. It comes with the badge. “We have to put on a shield to see the things we see and be able to get the job done so we can speak for the weak and for those who can no longer speak for themselves. That’s what we are here for,” Bess said. When a gunman recently opened fire inside of Sante Fe High School, killing nine students and a teacher, Bess and Clendennen assisted in the investigation. Before that, Clendennen also helped with the investigation of the church shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas. Last year, Bess was called upon to interview serial killer Anthony Allen Shore, who was executed on Jan. 18, 2018. Shore, who was convicted of one murder but confessed to four others, was thought to be a suspect in the 1983 murder of 20-year-old Susan Eads of Seabrook. Bess says he is certain Shore was not responsible for the crime. “I believe he committed more murders, but we proved that he did not kill Susan. He provided me with DNA and it did not match the DNA in Susan’s case. Shore also told me why he wouldn’t have targeted Susan. You can look at his victimology – the types of people he targeted – and it didn’t match,” Bess said. According to Bess, Shore admitted to sexually assaulting as many as 40-50 women in Texas and other states, but with no evidence or victims’ outcries, the investigation died with the condemned man. Both Clendennen and Bess were initially involved in the interviewing of Shore, but Clendennen exited the interview early on when Shore seemed to have a clear disdain for him. “It goes back to the first question about whether we relate to Woodrow or Gus. I sat in on the interview, but Shore just didn’t like me. We made an immediate decision that I would exit the room because Brandon had a nice rapport with the guy,” Clendennen said. “Looking back on it now, it’s kind of funny. I remember Brandon telling me several months later that he had gotten a Christmas card from the guy. “Think about that. Here is a guy on death row and he’s built such a rapport with the Ranger who interviewed him that he sent him a Christmas card not long before he was scheduled to be executed,” Clendennen continued. When asked what cases keep them up at night, they said “cold cases,” those that appear to be unsolvable without a major development or confession. For Bess, the case that haunts him is the 1982 murder of Monica “Christy” Wilson, who was killed at the age of 20. At the time of her death, Wilson was a newlywed and worked at a convenience store named Snappy’s in Liberty. The morning after her disappearance, Wilson’s body was found on FM 1409 in Dayton near an area known to locals as Dead Man’s Curve. Her killer was never identified. Clendennen says the unsolved murders of two young people from Polk and San Jacinto counties top his cold case list. “I think a lot about the Natasha Atchley case and the Carl Wills’ murder. There have been a lot of good investigators who have worked on the cases, but the thing about cold cases is a lot of times there isn’t a lot of evidence,” he said. “It almost takes a confession or a CODIS hit to get a suspect.” In 1992, 19-year-old Natasha Atchley disappeared following a birthday party in her hometown of Shepherd, Texas. The next morning her body was found in the charred remains of a vehicle that was set afire about a mile from where the party was held. Carl Wills, 22, was murdered in late August of 2011. His body was found on Sept. 1 by a fisherman in a roadside ditch on CR 2132 in north Liberty County, a few miles south of Rye. Wills had died from gunshot wounds to his back and head. Investigators believe that Wills, who lived in Livingston at the time, was killed elsewhere and dumped in Liberty County. “The cold cases require a ton of dedicated time, and you have to pick them up and drop them all the time to work on other cases,” Bess said. “Think about how many other cases are like that out there.” One of the biggest misconceptions about Rangers, they say, is that they are an internal affairs division to investigate law enforcement officers. “We actually are here to assist law enforcement. About 90 percent of the cases sitting on my desk, and the cases we handle, are assisting other agencies in their investigations,” Bess said. “But we are not in the business of interjecting ourselves into local departments’ investigations,” Clendennen added. Their role is often misunderstood by the public, they say. “People think they can just call us up to report a crime. We take citizens’ complaints but advise them to start with the agency in their jurisdiction,” Bess said. “We will do our best and be objective. The one thing we never want to do is harm the public’s opinion of the Rangers, no matter what we do.” Even when they are away from work, they know they have a reputation to maintain as one of the 162 Texas Rangers representing the state. “There just aren’t a lot of us across the state. We are just another police officer. The only thing that is different for us is that we are part of a family that has been around for almost 200 years. Our history is the oldest police agency in the world,” Bess said. “Once you are a Ranger, you are always a Ranger.”
Article courtesy of Vanessa Brashier with the Bluebonnet News
Arkansas State Police graduates 38 new members
The Arkansas State Trooper Training Academy began with 45 recruits on Sunday, February 25, 2018 in Little Rock, Arkansas. Twenty-one weeks later, Thirty-eight Arkansas State Police Trooper recruits graduated on Thursday, July 19, 2018. According to the Arkansas State Police news release, each recruit has accumulated more than one-thousand hours of classroom and practical training. Major General Mark H. Berry, Adjutant General of the Arkansas National Guard, was the keynote speaker addressing the graduates and assisted Colonel Bill Bryant, Director of the Arkansas State Police, in presenting the new troopers their certification and commission credentials. Arkansas Supreme Court Chief Justice John Dan Kemp administered the Oath of State Trooper Commission. Other dignitaries present for the ceremony included representatives of the Arkansas State Police Commission, department deputy directors, and division, troop and company commanders assigned across the department. Special recognition and awards were presented to the recruits who attained the highest scores within the respective training categories: academics, physical fitness and firearms. Upon reporting for duty at their respective troop headquarters, the new troopers will be placed with a certified departmental Field Training Officer (FTO). Each graduate will work in tandem with their respective FTO for a transitional period prior to being released to their assignment.
West Virginia State Police trooper honored with three awards for service
A State Police trooper injured in the line of duty received three honors Wednesday during a ceremony at the West Virginia State Police Headquarters. In March 2017, Sgt. David Fry responded to a domestic violence call in Lincoln County where a man high on meth was holding his wife hostage with a gun. Fry acted to save the woman and was shot in the shoulder and wrist. It took him eight months to recover from his injuries from which he had to undergo reconstructive surgery on his arm and intense physical therapy to be able to return to work. Governor Jim Justice and Superintendent of State Police Jan Cahill were both present to honor Fry with a Purple Heart, Medal of Valor and 2017 State Trooper of the Year. “This is a hero,” Justice said about Fry. “All these people are heroes. What they do for us every day is just this, and sometimes we forget it or we don’t appreciate it enough.” Justice explained the situation that Fry was involved in that night in March 2017 where he was the only responder to the incident and did not have any backup. He said the bravery that one has to display to go into a situation like that is amazing. “Let’s be real. How many of us, on our own, would go to a home where a guy is holding his wife hostage with a rifle and no back up anywhere and go try to help somebody?” Justice said. Fry was joined by his wife, daughter and mother at the WVSP Headquarters to receive his honors and said that he was very thankful for everything. “I feel fantastic. I’m very glad to be here,” he said. “I very much appreciate the governor’s remarks. I very much appreciate Col. Cahill not only in his official capacity but the way that the State Police, which is my family, has taken care of me through this.” He explained that it was just by chance that he was the trouper to be on the scene that night. “I’m in the position I’m in right because my number got pulled to take that call. There are two troupers who are out there right now who were in Hamlin with me at that time, but I’ve since been transferred,” he added. “It could’ve easily been them, and they would’ve done the same thing I did. I was given the opportunity to prove what we can do and that’s all it was.” Above all, Fry said that he is a state trooper and acting the way he did was not a personal thing at all but just what he was supposed to do. In the WVSP Headquarters there is a wall with photos of officers who have been killed on duty. Fry said his picture could’ve been added to the gallery. “This is about as close as you can get to not being on that wall,” he said. “I’m very proud, very honored, and I’m just really glad to be here.”
Nebraska State Patrol troopers honored for relaying rare lifesaving meds for child in Colorado
The late-night relay of a rare, lifesaving medication from Omaha to a children’s hospital in Colorado earned high praise for eight Nebraska State Patrol troopers Monday. At a press conference, Gov. Pete Ricketts commended the troopers for their teamwork and dedication. He particularly praised the initiative of Lt. Matt Sutter, who got the call from the Nebraska Medical Center about 10 p.m. May 29. Medical center officials needed a way to deliver the medication, which is usually used to treat brain infections caused by parasites, to Aurora, Colorado, as quickly as possible. But the last commercial flight of the day had left Omaha, and storms in eastern Nebraska kept smaller aircraft grounded. Sutter set in motion a modern-day Pony Express relay. An Omaha trooper picked up the medicine at about 10:15 p.m. from the medical center and headed west. The box was handed off to another trooper and then another and so on until it arrived in North Platte, where conditions allowed a medical transport airplane to take off. The medication arrived about five hours after it left Omaha. On Monday, Sutter said the teamwork required for the relay is typical for the patrol. But the possibility of saving a child’s life made the job special.
New Jersey State Police add 161 new troopers
Lieutenant Governor Sheila Y. Oliver, Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal, and Colonel Patrick Callahan of the New Jersey State Police, presented badges to New Jersey's newest state troopers during graduation ceremonies at the RWJ Barnabas Health Arena Friday, July 13. The 158th New Jersey State Police Class graduated 147 men and 14 women. Of this graduating class, 77 percent have a Bachelor's degree or higher, 18 percent are prior military, and 15 percent have prior law enforcement experience. Also, 28 among the class are multi-lingual and 13 are Trooper Youth Week graduates. The class completed 24 weeks of strenuous physical and academic training consisting of classroom lessons and practical training scenarios. The recruits also participated in role-playing exercises focused on motor vehicle stops, domestic violence situations, and human dignity. In the area of cultural diversity, the class received detailed instruction from community and cultural organizations. The life of a recruit is challenging in many ways. The New Jersey State Police Training Academy is one of the few residential academies in the nation. Recruits report to the academy before dawn on Monday morning, and they do not return home until dismissal on Friday evening. Therefore, recruits are away from their families during significant life events. The newly-graduated troopers have been assigned to stations throughout the state, and over the next few months, they will begin their careers under the watchful eye of their Trooper-Coaches and supervisors. “Today, the 161 graduates of the 158th New Jersey State Police Class are joining an elite group of law enforcement officers. In doing so, these men and women will continue a proud tradition of leadership and service in protecting and safeguarding the residents of this great state,” said Governor Phil Murphy. “I am confident this new generation of leaders will serve New Jersey with pride, dignity and honor.” “Congratulations to the New Jersey State Police Class graduates as they embark on a life in public service. We are very fortunate to have recruited such a bright and talented group of officers and I am hopeful that in the line of duty they will always serve with respect, dignity and compassion,”said Lieutenant Governor Sheila Y. Oliver. “We are grateful for their decision to enter this difficult and rewarding career and I wish them the best in the line of duty.” “As Attorney General, I hear on a daily basis about the vital work that New Jersey State Troopers perform to keep the people of our state safe and secure,” said Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal. “Whether they are patrolling our highways, arresting narcotics and gun traffickers, investigating violent crimes, apprehending child predators, or handling any number of other critical duties, the men and women of the State Police serve with courage and distinction. I congratulate the members of the 158th Class, and I wish them success and safety as they join the ranks and the proud tradition of the New Jersey State Police.” "The men and women of the 158th Class began their academy training as recruits and today embark on their careers as New Jersey State Troopers," said Colonel Patrick Callahan of the New Jersey State Police. "Now that their academy training is complete, they will be tasked with serving and protecting our citizens. I am confident that they will put to use what they have learned over the course of the last six months and are adequately prepared for the challenges they will encounter.”
New Michigan state troopers sworn in for duty
Michigan’s newest state troopers have graduated from the Michigan State Police (MSP) 134th Trooper Recruit School. Col. Kriste Kibbey Etue, director of the MSP, administered the Oath of Office and Governor Rick Snyder gave the keynote address during the ceremony at the Lansing Center, according to a press release from the MSP. The new graduates will report for duty at posts across the state, bringing the statewide workforce to 1,269 troopers. The school began in January and included training in firearms, water safety, defensive tactics, patrol techniques, report writing, ethics, cultural diversity and implicit bias, first aid, criminal law, crime scene processing and precision driving. Out of 152 prospective troopers, 107 graduated, according to the release.
Drone helps Missouri State Highway Patrol
Trooper Dan Yingling has been with the Missouri State Highway Patrol for seven years now and he's excited about the new addition of a drone to their crash team. "You know, I've been out on some crash scenes where we can't necessarily shut the roadway down completely and when you're trying to move traffic off of one lane into another, sometimes people get confused and you end up having to try to play frogger a little bit just to stay away from the cars," explained Trooper Yingling. Safety is just one of the advantages of the new technology. "It's a very detailed, gives a very detailed photographic evidence of what happened," stated Sergeant John Lueckenhoff. The drone costs a little over $6,000, but investing in this technology now is saving the troop time. "Instead of having to get out into the roadways to plot each individual point, we can fly the drone over or beside the road way and then we can take multiple pictures and we stitch all those pictures together with some computer software and it creates a 3-D model for us," said Yingling. And that means that a crash like this that may take over an hour to process traditionally can be completed in a 16 minute flight time with the drone. "When you consider the officer's safety and the actual shortage of highway closures, ultimately, this is making it safer for everybody," stated Lueckenhoff. This was the first time Troop D used the drone to cover a crash scene and while the weather conditions have to be right for the equipment to be used, Lueckenhoff sees a lot of promise in the technology.
To view video, go to: http://www.fox14tv.com/clip/14477388/drone-crash-investigation-9-7-9
Michigan State Police return to garrison hats
Michigan State Police will switch back to garrison hats on Sunday, July 8, and away from the campaign-style hats troopers have worn since December 2016, the agency announced on social media. Garrison hats are what most people are accustomed to seeing Michigan State Police wear. MSP had brought the campaign-style hats, the original style worn by state troopers, on Dec. 22, 2016, in honor of their 100th anniversary. Troopers wore campaign hats from the founding of the Michigan State Police through the early 1920s. That decision was the result of a vote taken by State Police employees, said Lt. Mike Shaw, a Michigan State Police spokesman.
New York State Police trooper killed in the line of duty
Trooper Nicholas Clark was shot and killed when he and other officers responded to a suicidal subject at 10041 Welch Road, in Erwin, New York. He had responded to the residence, along with members of the Steuben County Sheriff's Office and Corning Police Department, after the man's wife called 911 at approximately 3:30 am and reported that he was suicidal and possibly armed. Crisis negotiators were attempting to make contact with the subject when he opened fire, fatally wounding Trooper Clark. The subject was found deceased a short time later suffering from a self inflicted gunshot wound. Trooper Clark had served with the New York State Police for just under three years. He is survived by his parents and brother. He was a former two-time high school state wrestling champion and had previously tried out for the Buffalo Bills football team.
Missouri State Highway Patrol adds 26 new troopers
Colonel Sandra K. Karsten, superintendent of the Missouri State Highway Patrol, announced that 26 troopers graduated from the Patrol’s Law Enforcement Academy on June 29, 2018. The ceremony took place at 10 a.m. in the Academy gymnasium. The 105th Recruit Class reported to the Academy on January 2, 2018, to begin the 25-week training course to become a trooper. The new troopers report for duty in their assigned troops on July 16, 2018. Governor Michael L. Parson was a special guest speaker at the graduation ceremony, and Colonel Sandra K. Karsten also addressed the class. Brigadier General Gregory Mason, assistant adjutant general, Missouri Army National Guard, provided the keynote address during the graduation ceremony. The Honorable Mary Rhodes Russell, Supreme Court of Missouri, administered the Oath of Office to the new troopers. Dean Roger K. McMillian, vice president of College Affairs for Mineral Area College, conferred an associate of applied science degree to 11 of the new troopers. Troop F Color Guard presented and retired the colors. Sgt. John H. Lueckenhoff, Troop D, sang the national anthem. Pastor Gary Dedmon, Diggins Baptist Church, Seymour, MO, provided the invocation and benediction. Four class awards were presented. The recruits accumulated points toward graduation in the categories of physical fitness, firearms, and academics throughout their 25 weeks at the Academy. The person with the highest number of points in each category earned the respective award. Trooper Justice C. Simpson earned the physical fitness award. T rooper Cody A. Groves earned the firearms award. Trooper Kalen Linneman earned the academic award. Trooper Brandon S. Gunby accepted the Superintendent’s Award, which is presented to the person with the most points overall.
Ohio State Highway Patrol graduates 25 cadets in ceremony
The Patrol’s 163rd Academy Class graduated last Friday after 24 weeks of intense training. The keynote address was provided by Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted. Additional remarks were provided by Director John Born, Ohio Department of Public Safety; Colonel Paul A. Pride, Patrol Superintendent and Captain Chuck A. Jones, Academy Commandant. The Oath of Office was issued by Judge Everett H. Krueger, Delaware County Court of Common Pleas. Courses completed by the 163rd class included, crash investigation, criminal and traffic law, detection of impaired drivers, firearms, physical fitness, self-defense and emergency vehicle operations. Each of the graduates will reported to their posts on Sun., June 25, 2018. The graduates’ first 60-working days will be a field-training period under the guidance of a veteran officer. The new graduates are assigned to 17 of the Patrol’s 58 posts.
Kentucky State Police add 42 troopers to force
The Thin Gray Line got a little thicker on Friday, June 22, as 42 cadets graduated from the Kentucky State Police Academy. The 96th KSP Cadet Class had 75 members when it began Jan. 7, but during the rigorous training process 33 resigned. Training included more than 1,000 hours of classroom and field study in subjects such as constitutional law, juvenile and traffic law, use of force, weapons training, defensive tactics, first aid, high speed vehicle pursuit, criminal investigation, computer literacy, hostage negotiations, evidence collection, radio procedures, search and seizure, crash investigation, drug identification, traffic control, crowd control, armed robbery response, land navigation, electronic crimes, sex crimes, hate crimes, domestic violence, bomb threats and hazardous materials. As if that wasn’t enough during nearly six months at the KSP Academy, nine of the new troopers also earned Associate’s Degrees in General Occupational and Technical Studies from the Bluegrass Community and Technical College during the training, the first to do so thanks to legislation passed by the 2017 General Assembly that included new hiring guidelines. “Previously, applicants were required to have 60 hours of college credit, two years of active duty military experience or two years of certified police officer experience,” said KSP Commissioner Rick Sanders. “Now, anyone who possesses a high school diploma or GED and has three years of full-time work experience can apply for employment as a Kentucky State Trooper and earn an associate’s degree during the training process.” Lt. Gov Jenean Hampton told the new troopers they were coming on board during a time when the need for them was greater than ever. “Gov. (Matt) Bevin and I are very grateful that you have chosen to serve and the people of the Commonwealth of Kentucky have tremendous respect for what you do. God bless all of you and the family members that support you.”
Nevada Highway Patrol debuts patrol cars with 'ghost markings' that are tougher to see
Keep your eyes peeled, speeders, tailgaters and otherwise reckless drivers, it's about to get a little tougher to identify some Nevada Highway Patrol vehicles. A handful of patrol vehicles are being outfitted in a new "ghost" regalia, rather than Nevada Highway Patrol's normally eye-catching markings. The goal, according to a press release, is to increase enforcement efforts, "specifically targeting hazardous moving violations such as reckless driving as well as distracted driving, impaired driving, speeding and seat belt enforcement." Trooper Matt McLaughlin said the hope is that the new vehicles will be more difficult for erratic or aggressive drivers to spot and avoid. "(Aggressive drivers) will see a patrol car and they'll change their behavior," McLaughlin said. "So the thought process behind a subdued or a specially marked patrol vehicle, is that they may not be able to see us and we can observe those violations and get that person stopped before something bad does happen." Troopers driving the discretely-marked vehicles will have the same enforcement abilities as a Trooper driving a normally marked vehicle. The vehicles still bear many calling cards of a patrol car, such as a large grill and faintly visible lights, but many of the normally large reflective Nevada Highway Patrol insignias and markings are only faintly visible on the "ghost" vehicles. Just three patrol cars will be outfitted with the new markings at first, but more will likely be added.
When a boy from Brooklyn asked for help, the Rhode Island State Police answered
Corporal Lawens Fevrier got the mail on a fall day last year at the Hope Valley Barracks of the Rhode Island State Police. What he found was pretty unusual—a letter postmarked from Brooklyn, New York. “Dear Rhode Island State Highway Patrol,” the letter read. “I lost my Roger...can you please find him? I love him,” the writer said. “Roger is a cheetah,” the writer added, with a hand-drawn photo of Roger. “He fell out of the car window on Interstate 95 around West Greenwich. He is about 12 inches long.” It was signed: Will Ketcher, 4 years old. Fevrier said he was touched by the letter, thinking of his own young sons at home. “I know how important it is for them to sleep with their blankets or stuffed animal,” he said. “We were all 4 years old at one time in our lives.” Will’s mom, Stephanie Ketcher, says the family was never expecting to hear back from the state police. “The letter was never designed to be effective,” Ketcher said in a FaceTime interview from Brooklyn. She said the family had been visiting Will’s aunt at the University of Rhode Island when Will was hanging his stuffed cheetah out the window. The stuffed animal then flew out onto the highway. “That instantaneous reaction of...’I told you not to do that, I knew he was going to fly out the window,’” Ketcher said. “That quickly went away when I looked in the rear-view mirror and saw his sweet, sad face crumple up.” With the 4-year-old’s prize possession gone, the family determined it was unsafe to stop and try and retrieve it on I-95. In an attempt to quell Will’s devastation, Ketcher said Will’s dad suggested they write a letter. “Let’s write to the state police and try to get Roger back,” Ketcher said. The idea came from a scene in the Charlie Brown comic strip where Linus, desperate to recover his lost blanket that Lucy had used as a kite, puts an ad in the local paper asking for help finding it. In the comic strip, the “Air Rescue Service” eventually finds it floating over the Pacific Ocean. In Roger’s story, officials were not so lucky. Fevrier says troopers were on the lookout for the stuffed cheetah on I-95 but fell short. “We actually did send search and rescue out there,” he quipped. “Unfortunately, it was raining and we just couldn’t find the one that he lost.” A number of months went by. Then, one day Ketcher arrived home in Brooklyn and saw a package waiting. “I saw the return label on the box and I couldn’t even believe it,” she said. When the family opened the box, there was a brand new stuffed cheetah for Will—and a letter from the Rhode Island State Police. “On behalf of the Rhode Island State Police, we are so sorry that Roger was lost,” the note read. “We spent days looking for him on the highway. We couldn’t find him. We did find another cheetah walking around the highway. We stopped to talk to him. He said that he was looking for a new home in the Big Apple and we thought of you. Before we sent him to you we had to make him a Cheetah Trooper. The first cheetah trooper in the history of the Rhode Island State Police.” “He went right along with the narrative that we had created for Will,” Ketcher said. “Everybody we have told this story to is moved almost to tears. Some actually to tears.” Ketcher said the gesture “restored her faith in humanity.” “There’s so much negative stuff going on in the world, we’re inundated with it... it’s so refreshing to have something like this happen that just reminds you that there are really good people out there,” she said. When asked why he went above and beyond to help an out-of-state kid, Fevrier’s answer was simple. “We take every case serious, whether it’s a crime scene or a letter from Will,” Fevrier said. “We just wanted to...make him happy.” Over FaceTime, 4-year-old Will was certainly happy—thanking the state police and telling us he gave his new cheetah a very fitting name: “Rhody.”