208 troopers graduate from New York State Police Academy

NYSP January 2018 graduation

Another 200-plus troopers have joined the ranks of the New York State Police.  A graduation ceremony was held Wednesday at the Empire State Plaza in Albany for 208 new members of the state police.  It was the 206th class to graduate from the Basic School of the New York State Police Academy in Albany.  Democratic Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul spoke at the graduation ceremony and state police Superintendent George P. Beach II welcomed the graduates to the ranks of the nearly 5,000 troopers already serving across New York state.  The Academic Achievement Award was bestowed on Trooper Sean Snellings, of Blasdell, near Buffalo.  The new troopers report for field duty Feb. 5 for 10 weeks of supervised training.



AAST presents Spirit of the Trooper Awards for Hurricane Harvey assistance

Keith Barbier6


AAST Presents Spirit of the Trooper Award to Buc-cee’s and Academy Sports & Outdoors for their assistance to the first responders during Hurricane Harvey 

President Barbier presented Mr. Joe Matthews, VP of Loss Prevention with Academy Sports & Outdoors, the AAST Spirit of the Trooper Award that recognizes those who go above and beyond to support state troopers and their families.  Academy provided shelter from the storm at their Corporate Headquarters, located in Katy, Texas to the troopers arriving from out of town.  Troopers coming from west and northwest Texas were cut off from going to the DPS Houston Regional Office due to the flooding of the highways.  Academy opened up their parking garage to allow troopers to park and sleep in their patrol cars the first night.  Academy also allowed the National Guard to set up their mobile command post operations and tents for the soldiers assigned to the area.  The command post was stationed at this location for 3 weeks.  In the early days after Hurricane Harvey the National Guard was refueling helicopters at the Academy headquarters facility until other arrangements could be made.

Buc-ee’s Katy, Texas store General Manager Brent Call and Manager Robert Clark were also presented with the AAST Spirit of the Trooper Award by President Barbier for their Hurricane Harvey assistance.  The Buc-ee’s Katy store had not opened to the public by the time Hurricane Harvey made land fall.  The Grand Opening had been scheduled and the store was stocked and ready to open.  The decision was made by Buc-ee’s to delay the grand opening and allow the Texas Highway Patrol and other first responders to come into the store for rest, food, and beverages at no charge.  Mr. Call and Mr. Clark managed this project.

Rick Muniz, Lt. and George Rhyne, Major both retired Troopers from Texas Department of Public Safety, AAST members volunteered to cook for the Texas Troopers and the DPS mobile command post supervisors who were assigned to Katy during the Harvey recovery period.  Muniz and Rhyne cooked and served over 3,000 meals to State and Federal Law Enforcement Officers and volunteers who were working to rescue and evacuate people from flooded areas of Houston.  They were also assisted by hundreds of volunteers who served and cleaned up the cooking area, and others who donated food and services, with some offering to wash clothes for the Troopers.  Muniz and Rhyne were also presented the AAST Spirit of the Trooper Award. 

To read the entire article, go to:  http://www.chron.com/neighborhood/katy/article/Hurricane-Harvey-responders-honored-by-American-12536595.php



Florida Highway Patrol trooper intentionally struck by driver on highway

FHP Trooper deliberately hit by car

As Florida Highway Patrol trooper Joseph Perri filled out paperwork on the shoulder of a highway, a speeding sedan slammed into his patrol car.  But what seemed like an accident was actually done on purpose, and the man behind the wheel is facing charges, according to FHP officials.  After ramming into Perri, the Daytona Beach driver got out of the car, approached the trooper and told him he “struck the patrol car on purpose,” said FHP spoksperson Sgt. Kim Montes.  “The allegations that someone would intentionally target a Florida Highway Patrol Trooper as they were working in the name of safety is absolutely horrific,” Terry L. Rhodes, executive director of the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, said in a statement that was posted on Twitter.  On Monday afternoon, Perri was parked on the eastbound shoulder of I-4 at mile marker 103 near Sanford when 38-year-old Ryan John Hithersay drove his 2005 Hyundai sedan into his car, FHP says.  The Hyundai ended up in a muddy ditch, according to Montez, and the patrol car had side and tire damage.  Perri, 42, was not badly injured but was taken to a nearby hospital.  Hithersay faces a charge of aggravated battery on a law-enforcement officer, Seminole County jail records show.  Early last year, trooper Carlos Rosario, a 12-year FHP veteran, was also hit by a speeding vehicle.  Rosario had just stopped his patrol car on the side of the Dolphin Expressway to clock speeders.  He was standing beside his car when Hugo Andre Olivares, who was texting, speeding and driving, lost control of his Chevrolet and hit Rosario and his Dodge Charger so violently that the parked patrol car lurched forward at about 35 mph, according to an arrest warrant.  Rosario suffered extensive injuries to his legs, spine, face and head.



Friendly elk refuses to leave road with Idaho state troopers

Idaho state trooper and elk

An Idaho state trooper was caught on video trying to chase off a friendly and fearless elk that just wanted to hang out on the highway.  Idaho State Police said they were called to Highway 53, near the intersection with Pleasant View Road in Hauser, where some elk had been reported running through traffic.  One particularly troublesome elk refused to leave the roadway and the state police tweeted a photo of the curious animal poking its head through the window of a patrol cruiser.  "Um, apparently there are ELK on HWY 53 near the WA ID boarder," the tweet said.  "This young gal poked her head in the window of Trooper Branch's cruiser while we were trying to move them off the road.  Use caution in the area."  Resident Michelle Janshen posted a Facebook video of a frustrated trooper attempting to scare the elk away by turning on the lights of his patrol cruiser and flapping his arms menacingly.  The spectacle succeeds only in capturing the animal's attention and it remains with the troopers at the side of the road for several more minutes.



Indiana State Police find 121 pounds of pot during traffic stop

Indiana SP Pot traffic stop

Indiana State Police officers found nearly 121 pounds of marijuana during a traffic stop Thursday, resulting in the arrest of two New York residents.  Around 12:31 p.m., officers pulled over a gray Dodge Avenger after the driver, Howard Montogomery, 46, Rochester, New York, allegedly committed several traffic violations will driving eastbound on the Indiana Toll Road.  While police spoke to Montgomery and his passenger, Danielle Ruise, 32 of Rochester, New York, they became suspicious of criminal activity.  A free-air sniff, which allows a police dog to sniff the area around the car, was conducted and state police K-9, Axel, gave a positive indication. After conducting a search, police found about 121 pounds of suspected marijuana in the trunk of the Dodge.  Montgomery and Ruise were both arrested and face preliminary charges of felony dealing marijuana. Montgomery and Ruise were both transported to the Porter County Jail.  The state police were assisted by the Portage Police Department and Porter County Sheriff’s Department.