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Montana Highway Patrol welcomes 12 new troopers

Montana Highway Patrol welcomes 12 new troopers
Posted at 11:48 AM, Mar 04, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-04 13:54:20-05

The Montana Highway Patrol commissioned 12 new troopers at a graduation ceremony at the Civic Center in Helena on Friday, March 1, 2024. Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen and Lieutenant Colonel Kurt Sager addressed the new troopers prior to their badge pinning and taking the oath of office.

“This is the future of the Montana Highway Patrol, and our future is bright. They are ready to serve their community with pride and dedication to keeping our state safe,” MHP Colonel Steve Lavin said.

The 12 new troopers were part of the 78th MHP Advanced Academy, and completed 24 weeks of training.

Name: Initial Duty Station / Hometown
Anthony D. Carroll: Butte / Butte, MT
Ronaldo Chavez: Wolf Point / Missoula, MT
Alexander Crandall: Bozeman / Shevlin, MN
Roberto “Daniel” Erekson: Miles City / Billings, MT
Manti D. Jeffs: Choteau / Colorado City, AZ
Thomas G. Kachler: Glasgow / Newfoundland, NJ
Jerad R. O’Dell: Butte / Overton, NV
Gamal “James” Selim: Whitehall / Jacksonville, FL
James T. Taylor: Bozeman / San Luis Obispo, CA
Dylan W. Walls: Big Timber / Bremerton, WA
Josiah “Joe” Wamsley: Drummond / Helena, MT
Brett L. Westford: Malta / Cuter, WA

“It feels fantastic. We know we need troopers. Montana’s population is going up, our traffic crime is going up, our highway crime is going up. Crime in general in Montana is going up and we need dedicated highway patrol troopers. We're really lucky to be a state that we are still able to be recruiting pretty successfully in law enforcement,” Knudsen said.

Along with adding new troopers, eight current ones were promoted within the ranks.