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Fifty-five troopers graduate, as 75 recruits begin next academy

Fifty-five troopers graduate, as 75 recruits begin next academy

State Police seeks applicants for next class

LANSING, MICH. With hundreds of trooper vacancies due to continued attrition, the Michigan State Police (MSP) Recruiting and Selection Section and Training Division remain busy. On Thursday, 55 troopers graduated from the 138th Trooper Recruit School, which was quickly followed by the start of the 139th Trooper Recruit School on Sunday, March 7.

During a virtual graduation ceremony on March 4, in which Gov. Gretchen Whitmer was the keynote speaker, Col. Joe Gasper administered the Oath of Office to 55 new troopers, who this week start their assignments at MSP posts across the state. “I’m honored to recognize the 55 graduates of the 138th Trooper Recruit School as they join the ranks of the Michigan State Police and begin a career serving the people of Michigan,” said Whitmer. “Public service is both an honor and a calling, and I know that these new troopers will commit themselves to keeping our communities safe and step up to serve our state in times of need. Together, we will create a safer and more just Michigan for all.”

Of the 55 new troopers, six have been assigned to the Sixth District. Assigned to the Rockford Post is Tpr. Amanda Brauer, of Howell; Tpr. Michael DeVries, of Grand Rapids; and Tpr. Grant Gunneson, of Grandville. Assigned to the Hart Post is Tpr. Spencer Toepfer, of Grand Haven; and assigned to the Mt. Pleasant Post is Tpr. Chayce Abbey, of Mountain Home AFB, ID; and Tpr. Andrew Woodard, of Frankenmuth.

The 138th Trooper Recruit School began on Sept. 8, 2020, at the MSP Training Academy in Lansing. Recruits received training in firearms, water safety, defensive tactics, patrol techniques, report writing, ethics, cultural diversity and implicit bias, decision making, leadership, first aid, criminal law, crime scene processing and precision driving.

Tpr. Anthony Hoffman was elected Class Orator by his fellow recruits and spoke on behalf of the graduating class at their ceremony. In addition, Trooper Hoffman also received the Team Building Award. Other award recipients included Tpr. Janice Dixon who received the Outstanding Performance and Academic Achievement awards and Tpr. Zachary Smith who received the Marksmanship Award.

“We celebrate adding these 55 women and men to the Michigan State Police family,” said Col. Joe Gasper, director of the MSP. “I’m excited to see them start a rewarding career serving those who live in Michigan and visit our wonderful state.”

Including the 55 graduates of the 138th Trooper Recruit School, there are approximately 1,225 troopers assigned statewide, and a total of 1,900 enlisted members in the MSP.

The 139th Trooper Recruit School began on March 7, at the MSP Training Academy in Lansing with 75 prospective troopers. They are expected to graduate on Aug. 20, 2021.

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