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DWR Basic Law Enforcement Academy Graduates 10th Class

The Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources (DWR) Basic Law Enforcement Academy has graduated a new class of officers.  On September 7, 2018, the Honorable Heidi S. Barshinger, Clerk of the Henrico County Circuit Court, officially swore-in the new officers at the Greater Richmond Convention Center.

In all, 17 new conservation police officers (CPOs) were sworn-in at the ceremony. These officers completed an intensive training program that ran for 26 weeks. They will take up their assignments across the Commonwealth and proceed with field training under the direct supervision of field training officers.

This is the tenth class (The Muskies) to graduate from the Department’s Training Academy. DWR undertook establishing its own academy in order to tailor the program to the specific needs of Conservation Police Officers.

DWR’s Newest Conservation Police Officers, Along with Their Newly Assigned Counties

  • Nicholas Belotte, Charlotte County
  • Craig Chillcott, Bland County
  • Michael Chittum, Dinwiddie County
  • James Dooley, Lunenburg County
  • Gregory Goff Jr., Greene County
  • Joshua Guizar, Culpeper County
  • James Hale, Franklin County
  • Kyle Jones, Greensville County
  • Mark Machen, Northampton County
  • Roger Palmisano, Faquier County
  • Philip Pritt, Alleghany County
  • Adam Roberts, Goochland County
  • Tyler Routon, Franklin County
  • Brandon Royals , Page County
  • Nicholas Sumner, Amelia County
  • Keith Wilson, Halifax County
  • Shane Wilson, Brunswick County

Additionally, six previously certified Law Enforcement Officers attended the 10th Modified Basic Academy for 11 weeks to learn those skills that are specific to Conservation Police Officers.  These six CPO’s have been out in the field since May and have already completed their field training.

Previously Certified Law Enforcement Officers and Their Assigned Counties

  • Derrick Kekic, Frederick County
  • Mark Nash, York County
  • Anthony Pennino, Accomac County
  • Brandon Robinson, Henrico County
  • Justin Sumpter, Caroline County
  • Leslie Wright, Bedford County

Conservation Police Officers must be proficient in a wide array of skills including handling of firearms, crime scene investigations, control tactics, tactical tracking, drug and operating-under-the-influence enforcement, search and rescue, boat and vehicle operation, etc.

The following awards were presented at the ceremony to recognize the hard work and proficiency of the recruits and the dedication of instructors and academy staff. They are as follows:

TOP SHOT AWARD (Firearms – Presented by Officer Steve Hicks)

The recipient of the Top Shot Award is Officer Tyler Routon

OUTSTANDING DRIVER AWARD (Driving – Presented by SGT. Frank Spuchesi)

The recipient of the Outstanding Driver Award is Officer James A. Hale

MOST PHYSICALLY FIT AWARD (Physical Fitness – Presented by Officer Alberto Medina)

Physically Fit Award is Officer Tyler Routon

COLONEL’S AWARD (Academic Achievement – Presented by Major Bryan Young)

The Colonel’s Award recipient is Officer Brandon Royals

DIRECTOR’S AWARD (Best Instructor – Presented by Director Bob Duncan)

The recipient of the Director’s Award is Officer David Hennaman

BOARD AWARD (Exceptional Overall Performance – Presented by DWR Board Member Ryan Brown)

The recipient of the Board Award is Officer Adam Roberts

BOATING AWARD (Exceptional Overall Perf. – Presented by Sr. Officer Brandon Harris)

The recipient of the Boating Award is Officer Kyle Jones

  • September 21, 2018