California Highway Patrol worried about possible increase in crashes due to marijuana legalization

CHP Marijuana Legalization

Recreational marijuana will become legal in California at the start of 2018.  As more people have access to cannabis, the California Highway Patrol warns there is an increased risk of pot-impaired drivers on the road.  "You can look at the states that have legalized it and they've seen an uptick in collisions and fatal collisions, so it's definitely a concern for us," said CHP Officer Jonathan Sloat.  Despite that evidence, a new poll shows just 40 percent of Americans believe pot contributes to more crashes.  Officer Sloat said public perception has to change because the effects of marijuana are obvious. "What we see behind the wheel is the same thing we see with alcohol.  We see an inability to maintain your lane, maintain a consistent speed.  Slow reaction time," added Officer Sloat.  With alcohol, a 0.08 blood alcohol content is the legal basis to presume someone is intoxicated.  However, there is not a clear legal standard for impairment with marijuana yet.  Instead of passing a Breathalizer, the CHP will look for a driver's ability to pass field sobriety tests.  Officer Sloat suggests one simple rule: "If you're going to be smoking, don't jump behind the wheel, give it some time."  Or, arrange a different ride home.



State police receives over $1 million in grant funding to combat meth, heroin

 VSP Grant

Virginia State Police is one of six law enforcement agencies to be awarded grant funding from the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) for their efforts in combating the meth and heroin epidemic.  The department is heading into 2018 with $1,169,546 in grant funding from COPS, which is the second largest amount of grant funding of the six agencies.   Also, the COPS Anti-Methamphetamine Program (CAMP) awarded more than $5 million to six state law enforcement agencies.  "These state agencies have demonstrated numerous seizures of precursor chemicals, finished methamphetamine, laboratories, and laboratory dump seizures.  State agencies will be awarded two years of funding through CAMP to support the investigation of illicit activities related to the manufacture and distribution of methamphetamine," according to COPS.  The grant money will be used at the State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation’s (BCI) field offices across Virginia.  The department participated in 776 meth-related investigations in 2016 through its drug task forces statewide.  During those investigations, 37,744 grams of methamphetamine were seized, which had a street value of $4.5 million.   Also in 2016, state police took down 293 meth labs across the state.  This is the seventh COPS grant Virginia State Police received since 2004.



Good deed by state trooper paid forward by little girl

RI Donuts

A good deed at a Sheetz by a Pennsylvania State Trooper was paid forward by a little girl.  When 9-year-old Brooke didn’t have enough money to pay for her donut holes at the local Sheetz, Pennsylvania State Trooper Chad Savannah paid for her treat.  Savannah says Brooke rushed right out of the Sheetz after that.  That was when she went home and wrote a letter to Savannah, which read, “My name is Brooke and I am 9 years old.  I was at Sheetz and didn’t have enough money.  A nice police officer behind me kindly paid for my item.  I thanked him, but felt bad because I didn’t offer him the money I had.  So, I am donating this money.  I want to thank this officer again. Stay safe. Brooke.”  It continued from there.  Troopers collected $50 and delivered a Toys R Us gift card and a special letter to Brooke at her home.  They told her to buy toys for herself.  Brooke took the gift card and used it to donate $50 worth of toys to Toys For Tots.

To watch video, go to:




Rhode Island State Police present signed Patriots jerseys to boys involved in tragic crash

RISP Jerseys

The community came together on Friday, December 22, to help raise the spirits of two Providence children affected by tragedy earlier this month.  The boys are members of the West Elmood Intruders, a youth football team who traveled to Disney World for a national football tournament.  While on their way back home, one of the vehicles transporting the players got into a serious crash in South Carolina.  The mother of one of the players was killed in the crash, while another player suffered extensive injuries to his face and legs.  On Friday, Rhode Island State Police presented the boys with autographed New England Patriots jerseys.  “We sincerely hope these gifts make your holiday a little brighter,” Major Christopher Dicomitis said as he presented the boys with the framed jerseys at the South Side Boys and Girls Club in Providence.  The autographed jerseys were donated by Steve Barbato of Stevie B. Sports in Warwick, who said he was moved by the story of what happened.  “I wanted to make sure they had some joy in their lives because every kid deserves to smile at Christmas,” Barbato said.  State police said Barbato brought the shirts to Edgewood Gallery in Cranston to have them framed and the owner of the company, Ron Caracchio, donated the labor and materials.  “When I told [Caracchio] the story he said, ‘well, you’re not paying for it, I’ll frame them,’” Barbato recalled.  “Then Tasca Automotive, where I work, heard what I was doing and they said, ‘I know it sounds like I’m plugging everybody but we’ll pay for everything.’  So the support was overwhelming.”



Texas Department of Public Safety welcomes 97 new highway patrol troopers

Texas DPS December 2017 graduation

Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) Director Steven McCraw today was joined by members of the Texas Public Safety Commission (PSC) as the department commissioned 97 men and women as the state’s newest Highway Patrol Troopers.  Major General John F. Nichols, the Adjutant General of Texas, was the keynote speaker during the recruit graduation ceremony held in Austin.  “This class of Texas State Troopers represents the best of our country: men and women of different backgrounds from Texas and beyond, all with a shared commitment to public service,” said Major General Nichols, who oversees the Texas Army National Guard, Texas Air National Guard and Texas State Guard.  “Texans can rest easy knowing there are brave men and women like those graduating today who work to keep our communities safe every day. The Texas Military Department is fortunate to call the Department of Public Safety one of our closest partners, and I am proud to serve alongside today's graduates to protect and serve the people of Texas.”  “Each of you has worked tremendously hard to get where you are today, and your perseverance and accomplishments have been nothing less than remarkable,” said PSC Chairman Steven P. Mach.  “We are confident you will make us all proud as you walk out these doors to begin your new career serving and protecting our state as a Texas Highway Patrol Trooper.”  The D-2017 class, which is the department’s 162nd recruit school, included 18 women, 16 former peace officers and 36 military veterans.  The oldest graduate was 42-years-old and the youngest was 21-years-old.  The class suspended training for a week to assist disaster relief operations in downtown Houston during Hurricane Harvey.  They also raised money for school supplies for an Austin elementary school and law enforcement families who had a loved one killed or injured.  There were recruits who moved to Texas to join the Academy from 11 different states, and this is believed to be the highest number of women graduates in one class in the department’s history.  “You now represent DPS and the State of Texas in all that you say and do, so let the department’s core values – integrity, excellence, accountability and teamwork – always be your guide,” said DPS Director Steven McCraw.  “Thank you for answering the call to serve and protect your state.  Today you step into the important role as our state’s newest public protectors, and we are extremely proud of each of you.”  The new Troopers will report to duty stations across Texas in the coming weeks and spend the first six months in on-the-job training.  The Troopers began the 24-week training academy in July.  Instruction covered more than 100 subjects, including counterterrorism, traffic and criminal law, arrest and control procedures, accident reconstruction, first aid and Spanish.  They also received training in use of force, communication skills, firearms, driving, criminal interdiction, cultural diversity and physical fitness.