Pennsylvania Trooper Killed in Line of Duty
Trooper Landon Weaver was shot and killed when he and another trooper responded to a domestic disturbance at a rural home on Bakers Hollow Road in Juniata Township, Huntingdon County, at approximately 6:30 pm. He had responded to the home to investigate a protective order violation when he was shot. The subject who shot him had been released on bail on a felony charge earlier in the month. The subject was located the following morning is and is now deceased. Trooper Weaver had served with the Pennsylvania State Police for only one year and was assigned to Troop G. He is survived by his wife.
Connecticut State Police find 10,000 Oxycodone pills during traffic stop
Troopers found 10,000 oxycodone pills after stopping a truck on I-95 southbound Wednesday afternoon, state police. A trooper patrolling through the service center on I-95 southbound in Milford about 3 p.m. spotted a man outside a Ford F150 talking on a phone, state police said. They noted that he appeared agitated. The trooper also spotted numerous equipment violations on the truck, state police said. Another man came to the truck and they both left, pulling onto I-95, state police said. The trooper stopped the vehicle on the Exit 40 ramp. A police dog was called to the scene and alerted to drugs in the vehicle, state police said. Inside the truck, state police said the troopers found the pills, valued at about $200,000 on the street. State police took the passenger in the vehicle, 30-year-old John Carlos Torres of West Haven, to Troop G. Given the amount of drugs found, state police contacted the Drug Enforcement Administration, who after contacting the U.S. Attorney's office, decided to take over the case. State police turned Torres over to DEA custody. This was the second recent sizable opioids seizure in recent weeks in the region. On Dec. 21, police in Derby stopped a tractor trailer truck on Route 34. Inside they reported finding 55 pounds of suspected fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid. The drugs, they estimated, were worth $1.5 million. This case was also turned over to the DEA with the U.S. Attorney's office handling prosecution of the driver: 47-year-old Erick Escalante from Arizona.
Louisiana State Police equipping troopers with body cameras
Louisiana State Police plans to equip its state troopers with body cameras in an effort to improve transparency and safety. The LSP will purchase more than 1,500 of TASER’s “Axon Body 2” body cameras to be used by approximately 700 uniformed state troopers on patrol. “Each Trooper that’s assigned to patrol will get one,” LSP Master Trooper Brooks David with Lafayette-based Troop I said. Troop I has about 40 state troopers who cover eight parishes, including Iberia, St. Martin and St. Mary. Trooper interactions with the public usually take place during traffic stops in front of the trooper’s vehicle. More Troopers find themselves in situations that happen away from their vehicles and out of the line of sight of the current in-car camera systems, David said. “I think it’s self-explanatory. It will catch a whole lot more than just that picture in front of the vehicle,” he said. According to LSP Public Affairs Section’s Lt. J.B. Slaton, there is an increased need for the LSP to be able to document these interactions for evidence collection and the protection and safety of the troopers and the public. State Police Superintendent Col. Mike Edmonson researched the use recording devices in January 2016. His staff also researched other law enforcement agencies’ deployment of different types of recording systems as well as the capabilities and the compatibilities of the various recording systems. Twenty-two troopers across the state used the “Axon Body 2” cameras from February through September. “Nothing is more important than the safety of the public we serve and the troopers committed to that service. We must ensure that we maintain transparency and accountability through proper training, sound procedures and the latest technology,” Edmonson said. “For nearly 20 years our troopers have used in-car cameras to document interactions with members of the public, but I am pleased to announce that we will now be taking that capability a step further.” “Fully deploying HD body cameras, let alone taking the innovative step of purchasing two per officer, is undoubtedly a bold move in the direction of improved accountability and officer protection,” said TASER CEO and co-founder Rick Smith. “Combine that with our Axon Signal technology, which virtually ensures that important interactions don’t go unrecorded, and you’re looking at an agency whose technology can help them go above and beyond. We commend them on being the first major, statewide agency to take these steps.” “They’re going to outfit New Orleans first because of the troopers that work on Bourbon Street and then after that they’ll start outfitting the troops,” David said. “I don’t know which order they’re going to go in.”
Pennsylvania State Police welcomes 62 new troopers
Commissioner Tyree C. Blocker announced that 62 cadets graduated from the State Police Academy in Hershey, PA and have been assigned to troops across the commonwealth. The men and women represent the 147th graduating cadet class. Blocker spoke during the ceremony at Bishop McDevitt High School, along with Lieutenant Colonel Lisa Christie and Major William White. Anthony Mazzone, from Montgomery County, spoke on behalf of the graduating cadet class.