The South Carolina Highway Patrol announces the graduation of 45 troopers from Highway Patrol Basic Classes 98 and 99 today. Gov. Nikki Haley once again addressed the graduates.
“You now have earned the distinguished uniform, but the uniform doesn’t earn you respect,” Gov. Haley said. “You have to earn respect in your actions, in the way you interact with people, in your relationships within the communities in which you work … You are probably coming into this job at one of the hardest times and as we see across the country, it is just getting harder and harder for law enforcement, but what I want you to know: we’ve got your backs.”
The 98th class graduated from the SC Criminal Justice Academy on May 16, 2016. The 99th class graduated on August 5, 2016. After graduating from the Academy, both classes continued on with specialized training from the Highway Patrol in all areas of law enforcement. The SCHP Basic Training Program consists of 21 weeks of extensive law enforcement training in-residence. After graduation, Troopers must complete additional field training: a minimum of six to eight weeks of field training.
“Those who choose to serve – whether it is in the armed forces or as law enforcement officers — are the ones who stand in the gap to protect us all from crime and terrorism,” said SCDPS Director Leroy Smith. “I am thankful that SCDPS is part of that brave group of men and women – our protectors. And today – we will have 45 more protectors throughout our state.”
Highway Patrol Commander Col. Mike Oliver told graduates: “It isn’t just about what you do in uniform but about adopting a lifestyle. These past 21 weeks, you have learned core values: selfless service, integrity, responsibility. Now, it it is time to put those into practice. The life of a state trooper is demanding but equally rewarding.”
The graduation brings the total number of troopers in South Carolina to 812, which includes 48 trooper trainees in the 100th Basic Class. Additional precertified officers will be joining the 100th Basic Class on October 14. The Highway Patrol is currently hiring for the January 2017 class.
Troopers are assigned to areas based upon population, calls for service, and the number of licensed drivers/registered vehicles in an area. The troopers from Basic 98 and 99 are designated to the counties found in the link above, along with their home counties and photos.
Each graduation, the Patrol presents distinguished awards to outstanding troopers from each class. The winners from the 98th and 99th class include:
Winner of the Colonel P.F. Thompson Outstanding Achievement Award: for the trooper who displays the character and dedication symbolic of former Highway Patrol Colonel P.F. Thompson, the longest serving Patrol commander: Basic 98: Thomas Pinkerton, Hometown: Dallastown, PA; Assignment: Troop 5/Georgetown/Williamsburg. Basic 99: Alexander Goode, Hometown: Ninety Six, SC; Assignment: Troop 2/Greenwood/Abbeville.
Captain Cecil Dilworth Marksmanship Award: presented to the trooper who had the best marksmanship during firearms training: Basic 98: Bradley Tarter, Hometown: Allendale; Assignment: Troop 7, Bamberg. Basic 99: Daniel Rebman, Hometown: Orlando, Fla., Assignment: Troop Six, Charleston/Berkeley.
Winner of the Israel Brooks Jr. Physical Fitness Award: presented to the trooper who excelled on the physical training test and excelled each day during the early morning exercises. Basic 98: Talon Walls, Hometown: Rock Hill; Assignment: Troop 4, Chester/Fairfield; Basic 99: Alexander Goode, Hometown: Ninety Six, SC; Troop 2, Greenwood/Abbeville.
The South Carolina Department of Public Safety includes the Highway Patrol, State Transport Police, Bureau of Protective Services, Office of Highway Safety and Justice Programs, Immigration Enforcement Unit and the South Carolina Law Enforcement Officers Hall of Fame. Our mission is to ensure public safety by protecting and serving the people of South Carolina and its visitors. www.scdps.gov