Washington State Patrol vehicles get carbon monoxide alerts

WSP Ford SUV

The Washington State Patrol is equipping hundreds of its vehicles with carbon-monoxide detectors after six troopers since January have reported feeling sick from possibly inhaling exhaust fumes.  Crews will install the devices in 634 Ford Explorer Police Interceptors over the next few weeks, according to State Patrol Capt. Shane Nelson.  The move comes amid a months long federal investigation into a version of the Ford Explorer over worries of exhaust-fume problems nationwide.  Ford has responded to the numerous carbon-monoxide claims by promising to make repairs as it investigates the complaints.  According to a statement on the State Patrol’s blog, six troopers reported symptoms associated with possibly breathing in carbon monoxide while at work in Interceptors, a high-performance version of the Ford Explorer used by law enforcement.  They made the reports January through mid-July.  Two troopers were hospitalized, and released, Nelson said at a news conference Friday, which the State Patrol streamed online.  Officials confirmed there was measurable carbon monoxide in the system of one of the troopers.  Both have returned to work.  “We wanted to get in front of it, make sure everybody was protected,” Nelson said of the detector being installed in troopers’ vehicles.  Symptoms of carbon-monoxide poisoning include dizziness, weakness, shortness of breath and nausea or vomiting.  Meanwhile, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is investigating complaints of exhaust odors and possible carbon-monoxide exposure in 1.33 million Ford Explorers across the nation.  Among the complaints, three involved crashes and 41 were reports of injuries, such as loss of consciousness, nausea and headaches.  In Texas, the Austin Police Department has pulled nearly 400 of its Ford Explorers off the street.  More than 60 officers there have reported health problems since February, and more than 20 were found to have measurable carbon monoxide in their systems, city officials said.  Ford said in a statement it has discovered holes and unsealed spaces in the back of some police-department Interceptors that had equipment installed after leaving Ford’s factory.  The company said police and fire departments routinely drill holes in the backs of vehicles to add customized lighting, radios and other equipment.

8/3/17

Line

Rhode Island State Police receive top-level accreditation from national group

RISP CALEA

The Rhode Island State Police have received a “gold standard assessment” from the national Commission on Accreditation of Law Enforcement Agencies.  Col. Ann Assumpico announced Sunday morning that the State Police received the Accreditation with Excellence award from the organization, which is the highest level of accreditation that CALEA awards.  The State Police become the only law enforcement agency in the state to receive top-level accreditation.  The State Police have been accredited since 1994 but decided to go even further and apply for the more rigorous Accreditation with Excellence award, which demands that they meet or exceed 480 professional standards outlined by CALEA.  The CALEA assessment concluded last week as the State Police hosted the CELEA 2017 Summer Conference, at which many other departments concluded assessments.  According to Col. Assumpico, the CALEA Review Committee praised the State Police for diversity in its ranks, the low number of complaints filed against its personnel, having few vehicle pursuits, and for having a police dog specifically training in finding electronic equipment used in cyber crimes.  “This is a tremendous honor earned by the hard-working men and women who serve the citizens of our state with professionalism and pride,” Assumpico said in a statement.  “It also underscores our commitment to providing Rhode Islanders with exceptional law enforcement that meets or exceeds national standards at every level.”

8/2/17

Line

Tennessee Highway Patrol conducts traffic stop, locates 28 pounds of marijuana

 

THP Marijuana bust

On July 12th, 2017, Trooper Al Seitner of the Tennessee Highway Patrol (THP) Cookeville District stopped a vehicle in Putnam County for following another vehicle too closely.  The driver, 25-year-old Jonathan Kossa of Cookeville, Tennessee appeared extremely nervous for a simple traffic violation.  While talking to Kossa, Trooper Seitner observed a large cardboard box in the back seat of the vehicle.  When asked what was in the box, Kossa said he did not know as he was transporting the box for his roommate.  Consent to search the vehicle was requested and Kossa denied.  Trooper Seitner requested K-9 assistance from the Cookeville Police Department.  Their K-9 made a positive alert on the vehicle.  A search of the vehicle revealed 18 vacuum sealed packages of marijuana (approximately 28 lbs) inside the cardboard box.  Kossa was arrested for possession of Schedule VI narcotics for manufacture, sale and delivery.

8/2/17

Line

Maryland State Police to Support National Night Out Efforts

National Night Out

Maryland State Police will join communities and other law enforcement agencies across the state on Tuesday, August 1 in support of National Night Out.  National Night Out is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live.  Communities from Western Maryland to the Baltimore region to the Eastern Shore and Southern Maryland have a variety of events planned for National Night Out.  From block parties and festivals to parades, cookouts and other community events, neighborhoods are reaching out to Maryland State Police and other law enforcement  agencies as a part of this collaborative effort.  Citizens who attend a National Night Out event in their respective communities will have the chance to interact with troopers and learn ways to help make their neighborhood a safer place to live.  Since the inaugural event in 1984, National Night Out has grown from 2.7 million Americans participating in 400 communities in 23 states to more than 37 million people and 15,000 communities from all 50 states, U.S. territories, Canadian cities and military bases worldwide.

7/31/17

Line

From homeless to Highway Patrol officer

CHP Officer From Homeless to officer

A former Sacramento homeless man is now a new CHP officer.  Edwin Lopez, now 26, was 21 years old when he was homeless.  He used to sleep on benches in North Laguna Creek Park where he spent many nights hoping, praying, and sleeping.  "I was pretty new with my job and ended up getting cut at my job," Lopez said.  He was working at a tire shop in Elk Grove in 2012.  At first, he lost his apartment and then his car.  He was able to get some money since he was in the reserves but it wasn't much.  He used the money to buy some food and to pay for his phone bill so potential employers could still contact him.  He said he didn't try to get help from the government and his family wasn't in a position to help him.  "The thing is I got help here and there, but at the time I can't expect anyone to fully pay for an apartment and food and my car," said Lopez.  Lopez said the seven to eight months he was homeless was a blur.  "Honestly all those months blurred into one time," Lopez said.  "I took it upon myself to do whatever I could to get out of the situation."  He showered when he was able to sleep with friends and couch surf.  As for food, he checked dumpsters near restaurants.  He spent a majority of his time by the park and also near his old apartment.  It was a place he was familiar and found comfort.  He learned a lot during his time homeless not only about survival but how to budget wisely.  "A lot of people complain about not having enough money based off their job but a lot of it is just how you spend your money," Lopez said.  Today, he lives in Castro Valley getting adjusted to his new job and his soon to be new title as husband.

Watch video at:  http://www.wfmynews2.com/news/features/former-sacramento-homeless-man-now-chp-officer/459361451

Line