(INDIANAPOLIS) - Seven new Indiana Conservation officers, including a man from Heltonville, officially joined the DNR Division of Law Enforcement.
Dale Clark, recipient of the Division's James D. Pitzer Outstanding Officer of the Year Award earlier this year, administered the oath of office.
The new officers represent the 33rd recruit class of Indiana Conservation Officers, the oldest law enforcement agency in the state. The officers, their hometowns and assignment locations (by county and district in parentheses) are:
* Aaron M. Todd, Heltonville (Owen, District 5)
* Jarred E. Coffing of Monticello (Delaware, District 4)
* Eli J. Hendricks, West Terre Haute (Parke, District 5)
* Kurt S. Kinser, Bloomington (Steuben, District 2)
* Matthew G. Maher, Greentown (Kosciusko, District 1)
* Jeffrey T. Reed, Washington (Elkhart, District 1)
* Joshua C. Thomas, Madison (Fayette, District 9)
"The training and resultant graduation of these officers is the culmination of a lot of hard work," said Law Enforcement division director Danny East. "We are proud of their accomplishments thus far as they move to their next training phase at the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy."
The new officers underwent five weeks of basic instruction followed by 12 weeks of on-the-job training. Their lessons will continue with a 15-week course at the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy, after which they will report to their assignments to complete a one-year probationary period.
The DNR employs 214 conservation officers who, in addition to enforcing state laws, are often called upon to help during emergencies and natural disasters.
They also engage in non-law enforcement activities such as outdoor instructional programs, including boater, hunter, snowmobile, and trapper education. River rescue, cave rescue, underwater search and recovery and K-9 teams are specialty response units available statewide whenever needed.
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