Section of I-90 named for Ohio Highway Patrol Trooper killed in the line of duty
A section of Interstate 90 will bear the name of a Lorain County law enforcement officer who was killed in the line of duty. The stretch of I-90 from Warren Road to Hilliard Road in Cuyahoga County will be named after Ohio Highway Patrol Trooper Kenneth “Kenny V.” Velez, 48. The Lorain native died from injuries he sustained in a traffic crash on Sept. 15, 2016. The roadway will be known as the “Trooper Kenny Velez Memorial Highway.” The tribute was tucked in among 28 bills that Ohio Gov. John Kasich signed into law on Jan. 4. Velez was not mentioned by name in the news announcement that Kasich’s office published that about the numerous bills. Kasich used the social media website Twitter to pay tribute to Velez and to state Rep. Dan Ramos, D-Lorain, a cousin of Velez and sponsor of the bill to honor the fallen trooper. Ramos also used Twitter to respond to the governor’s action “to honor Lorain Co & Ohio’s hero, Trooper Kenny Velez.” “I didn’t do that because he was my cousin, I did that because he was my constituent,” Ramos said on Jan. 7. “It meant a lot to me.” Last year, Ramos recalled the number of people who came out for Velez’ funeral as the most people he ever saw gathered in once place in Lorain County at one time. “It was powerful,” Ramos said. “He knew everybody and everybody knew him. Everybody liked him.” Ramos explained how the legislation came about and the legislative procedure in Columbus. After the death of Velez, Ramos said he consulted Velez’ children about a roadside tribute to their father. They approved and he introduced legislation in 2016. The bill for Velez had committee approval in the House, Ramos said. He added that Patrol Superintendent Col. Paul A. Pride was a Patrol Academy classmate of Velez and Pride testified in favor of the name change. However, the bill was on hold during campaign season and the year-end rush of the statehouse, so the tribute to Velez was folded into a Senate Bill for quicker approval. Once that happened, it landed among the bills Kasich signed last week, Ramos said. The governor and lawmakers sometimes will have signing ceremonies for people to attend in Columbus, but Velez’ family could not attend last week’s gubernatorial signing on short notice, Ramos said. Another ceremonial signing and meeting between Kasich and Velez’ family may yet take place, depending on everyone’s schedules, Ramos said.
Routine Traffic Stop by Connecticut State Police Leads to Heroin Bust
State police conducting routine motor vehicle enforcement Friday night on I-84 arrested three men on heroin possession charges after finding more than 170 bags of the drug in their vehicle. The incident started at about 9:15 p.m. when troopers noticed a car with equipment violations as it traveled on I-84 near Tolland. They followed the car off the highway and stopped it on Rte. 74 in Willington. As troopers were talking to the occupants, they admitted they had drugs in the vehicle. Police found a total of 170 bags of heroin in the car. The driver, David McKnight, 53, of the Danielson section of Killingly, was charged with possession of heroin with intent to sell and a brake light violation. He was held overnight on a $75,000 cash bond and will be arraigned in Superior Court in Rockville on Monday. Anthony Falzone, 24, of Norwich, was charged with possession of heroin, as was Ryan LaFountain, 27, of Danielson. Both of them were released after posting $10,000 bonds. They are scheduled to appear in Superior Court in Rockville on Jan. 24.
California Highway Patrol's Mounted Patrol Unit
The California Highway Patrol’s Mounted Patrol Unit marched with pride along the 2017 Pasadena Tournament of Roses parade route – one of 25 equestrian teams that were selected out of hundreds of applicants to take part in the Rose Parade. On Wednesday, December 28, the six CHP riders and their horses made the journey from Sacramento to Pasadena, by truck and trailer, to get settled before marching along the route down Colorado Blvd. and be part of the more than 100-year-old Rose Parade tradition. Authorities, saying they have learned valuable lessons from the March terrorist attack in Brussels, ramped up security for the 128th annual Rose Parade with barricades, security checkpoints and other measures. Pasadena Police Chief Phillip Sanchez told reporters Wednesday that some of those measures included water-filled barriers designed to stop would-be terrorists from crashing cars into crowded areas. https://goo.gl/bMGdi4.
Michigan State Police adds 13 motor carrier officers
Michigan will soon benefit from the services of 13 additional Michigan State Police (MSP) motor carrier officers with the graduation of the 21st Motor Carrier Officer Recruit School. Governor Rick Snyder served as the keynote speaker at Friday’s graduation ceremony held at the Kellogg Hotel & Conference Center in East Lansing. “Public safety and the protection of our highway infrastructure is a very important job,” said Snyder. “These highly trained officers play a crucial role in Michigan’s economy. Their dedication and commitment to serving our great state and its residents is appreciated.” Motor carrier officers are armed uniformed members of the MSP who specialize in commercial vehicle enforcement. They enforce traffic safety laws on commercial vehicles, protect the infrastructure through aggressive size and weight enforcement, conduct commercial vehicle and driver inspections and contribute to homeland security efforts by enforcing hazardous material regulations. “We welcome the addition of these new motor carrier officers to the MSP Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division,” said Col. Kriste Kibbey Etue, director of the MSP. “Michigan’s residents are depending on them to deter and detect criminal activity with commercial vehicle activities, protect our state’s highways and infrastructure, and promote safety and security at our international border crossings.”