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Deputy Sheriff Makes Connection At Festival September 12, 2018

On duty at the recent Citadel Country Spirit USA concert in Ludwig's Corner, Chester County Deputy Sheriff Matthew "Jamie" Mendenhall was giving Nero, his K-9 partner, some exercise when a man initiated a conversation about the importance of K-9s. The man subsequently introduced himself as Doug Paisley, the father of country superstar Brad Paisley, who was to perform at the concert on Aug. 26.

As the two continued their discussion, Mendenhall noted that two area K-9 handlers had lost their lives in the line of duty in recent years: Plymouth Township Police Officer Bradley Fox and Berks County Deputy Sheriff Kyle Pagerly. Mendenhall, who came to Chester County from the Berks County Sheriff's Office, had supervised Kyle in the K-9 Unit there.

Doug asked if Mendenhall could supply photos of the two fallen heroes so that his son could pay tribute to them during his performance. Further, he asked if Mendenhall wanted tickets to the concert.

Mendenhall shared that Kyle and his wife, Alecia, were both huge fans of Brad. In fact, Kyle's special song for his wife was Brad's "She's Everything." Mendenhall then contacted Alecia to let her know that "Brad Paisley's dad says hello" and to see if she wanted to come to the concert.

Alecia arrived 15 minutes before Brad Paisley took the stage; it was the first time she had seen him live. He sang "When I Get Where I'm Going" in front of a giant projection showing Kyle and Fox and their respective K-9 partners, Jynx and Nick. The country icon also performed Kyle Pagerly's anthem to his wife. According to Doug, that song was added and had not been on the original play list.

Alecia also reconnected with Chester County Sgt. Paul Bryant Jr., who was also on duty at the music festival. She had not seen Bryant since the day her late husband graduated from the Philadelphia Police K-9 Academy, where the sergeant had previously worked.

At the end of the event, Mendenhall was unable to leave the concert grounds because his vehicle was blocked by a school bus bearing the number 27, which was Kyle's badge number.

For more information on Kyle Pagerly, readers may visit


Northwest EMS Works Toward Fundraising Goal September 6, 2018

Northwest Emergency Medical Services (EMS) is more than halfway to its goal of raising $30,000 to purchase bullet-resistant vests for crew members. The EMS agency intends to provide the vests due to the opioid crisis and an increase in active shooter threats. Northwest EMS covers the northern tier of Lancaster County from Conoy Township to Clay Township, including Elizabethtown and Manheim.

As payments for ambulance services decrease, the EMS agency based in Elizabethtown decided to ask area residents to help protect its crews. The community responded, and to date the agency has received $15,151 in checks, including at least 20 from donors who paid the full $500 cost of one vest, and $1,665 from the GoFundMe page, for a total of $16,816.

Recently the EMS agency received help from the Northwest Regional Police, which patrols West Donegal and Mount Joy townships. The Northwest Regional Police Commission donated $1,000, and the Northwest Regional Police Association, representing the officers, donated $500.

Contributions may be made at


Active Shooter Presentation Slated September 5, 2018

The Pennsylvania State Police will offer a two-hour Active Shooter Presentation on Monday, Sept. 24, from 7 to 9 p.m. at New Hope (Fissel's) United Church of Christ, 3426 Fissel's Church Road, Glen Rock. The presentation will be led by a representative of the Domestic Security Section of the State Police's Intelligence Division.

Audio and video clips will be used to demonstrate what may occur during an active shooter situation. The presentation is designed to cover all venues, such as places of worship, open spaces, education facilities, public settings and shopping facilities. Statistics, trends, and real incidents will be discussed. The presenter will also discuss behaviors, thoughts, and feelings that may contribute to a person becoming an active shooter.

The presentation is free and open to the public. No reservations are required.

For more information, readers may call Dave at 717-235-3720, or they may call the church at 717-235-2033 between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays.


Organizations To Host "Stop The Bleed" August 21, 2018

On Thursday, Sept. 13, Susquehanna Valley Emergency Medical Services (SVEMS) and the Hellam Township Police Department will host Stop the Bleed, an event designed to help individuals know what to do in the event of a serious injury. According to organizers, the top cause of preventable death in trauma is bleeding, and knowing what to do in a dangerous emergency can mean the difference between life and death.

The course will be held from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Hellam Township Public Works building, 44 Walnut St., York. Professionals will teach hands-on skills that folks need to know to provide immediate care to someone with life-threatening injuries. The event is free and open to the public. To register, interested individuals may visit and click on the education tab and sign up on the Stop the Bleed page. The deadline to register will be 3 p.m. on Sept. 13.

"The purpose of the event is to educate all who want to learn how to act and react in an active shooter situation and learn how to control bleeding," explained Terri Givens, business development manager for SVEMS.

Participants will have the chance to learn how to apply pressure to a wound, pack a wound with gauze, and use a tourniquet. Givens said that to make the experience as realistic as possible, SVEMS operations manager Adam Marden uses cranberry juice so that participants get a sense of what it is really like to control bleeding.

Hellam Township Police Chief Doug Pollock will discuss what to do in an active shooter situation and go over Run, Hide, Fight techniques. SVEMS education manager Rob Walker will share information on how to triage injured individuals, and participants may engage in hands-on practice following the lecture.

Givens noted that in addition to helping people to prepare for potential emergencies, the course provides knowledge that is useful in other situations, such as getting a cut or witnessing an automobile accident. SVEMS hosted a similar event in York earlier this year and had Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts attend in preparation for camping trips.

"Our hope for those attending would be to learn lifesaving skills that they can use for the rest of their lives," said Givens.

On Wednesday, Sept. 5, Marden and SVEMS will be recognized by the Lancaster City and County Medical Society and presented with the Benjamin Rush Award for their work with Stop the Bleed. To learn more about Stop the Bleed, a national awareness campaign, readers may visit


First Responders Receive Awards August 15, 2018

Local first responders Derek Eveler, Wayne Bush, and Dennis Wilt received Commendation Awards from the Emergency Health Services Federation on Aug. 3 at Red Lion Area Ambulance Association (RLAAA). They were recognized for their role in saving a life.

On June 8, Red Lion Area Ambulance EMTs Eveler and Bush, along with Medic 102-6 - UPMC Pinnacle LifeTeam paramedic Wilt responded to a call for a cardiac arrest in Windsor Township. The patient's neighbor had witnessed the patient collapse in the front yard and immediately called 911 and began CPR, continuing until the police arrived and took over CPR.

The first responders arrived to find police and fire departments on the scene and CPR in progress. A York Regional Police Department officer reported that one shock had been delivered using an automated external defibrillator (AED). The EMS team continued patient care with manual CPR, followed by placement of the LUCAS, an automatic mechanical CPR device. Two more shocks were delivered with the AED. A pulse was re-established and the patient began to regain consciousness. Today, the patient is doing well and is enjoying life with his family.

At the recognition ceremony, C. Steven Lyle, executive director of the Emergency Health Services Federation, presented the awards to Eveler, Bush and Wilt. Recognition commendations were also presented to the police officers, the firefighter and the patient's neighbor for their actions.

Attending the ceremony were the patient, Bradley Blouse, and his family; the neighbor who had called 911 and performed CPR; firefighter Barry Barshinger from Laurel Fire Company No. 1; Officers R. Brice and R. Miller, York Area Regional Police Department; Michael J. Kraska, EMT-P shift leader/EMS captain - UPMC Pinnacle LifeTeam EMS; Rep. Stan Saylor; Rep. Keith Gillespie; and Rep. Kristen Phillips-Hill. Also attending from RLAAA were Travis Gladfelter, director of operations; Kimberly Grim, EMS supervisor; co-workers of Eveler and Bush; and the board of directors.

RLAAA will offer free hands-only CPR training for members of the greater Red Lion community. For dates and times, readers may call 717-244-0983 or email Travis Gladfelter at or Kimberly Grim at


Sheriff's Office Swears In New Deputies August 14, 2018

The Chester County Sheriff's Office recently welcomed three new deputies. Arthur B. Adams, Asim O. John, and Sean M. Marasco each took the oath during a swearing-in ceremony held in Courtroom One of the Chester County Justice Center.

Adams, a native of Chester County, has been working for several years as a security officer, most recently at Lankenau Hospital. He also worked previously as a correctional officer at Chester County Prison.

After graduating from Downingtown West High School, Adams decided that his longtime interest in helping others made law enforcement a logical career choice. Although his family has a strong history of military service, Adams was the first to pursue police work. He received his Act 120 certification from the Delaware County Community College Police Academy in 2013.

When he is not working, Adams enjoys spending time with his family as well as playing golf.

John grew up in Oxford, and after graduating from Oxford Area High School, he found a niche for his mechanical talents in the aerospace industry, where he built parts for private jets and helicopters. About five years, he became interested in changing gears.

A close friend, former Chester County Deputy Sheriff Kevin Brough, urged John to consider law enforcement, especially the Sheriff's Office. John graduated from the Delaware County Community College Police Academy in 2016 and began working for the Lincoln University Police Department.

In his spare time, John enjoys spending time with his family. He and his wife have three children, ranging in age from 7 months to 11 years, and a fourth child is on the way. John can also often be found making repairs or improvements to cars or exercising his passion for motorcycles.

Although Marasco was born in Wilmington, Del., his family moved to Chester County when he was an infant. He considers himself a Coatesville native since he grew up in that area. He experienced strong military and law-enforcement influences from multiple family members, but he did not decide to follow that lead until after earning a bachelor's degree in international business from Widener University.

Since then, Marasco obtained a real estate license, traveled around the world, and joined the Pennsylvania Army National Guard, where he has served for the past five years. He also attended the Reading Police Academy, graduating in 2015.

Marasco and his wife, Jessica, have two sons: 3-year-old Mason and 4-month-old Kelley. In his free time, Marasco enjoys a wide variety of outdoor activities, including camping, kayaking, snowboarding and scuba diving.


Police Officers, Students Play Dodgeball August 2, 2018

On May 8, Hambright Elementary School students in grades four and six gathered in the gymnasium to take part in a memorable game of dodgeball. Their opponents were seven local police officers from Lancaster and Manor Township. The competition was organized as a way to help foster a positive relationship between police officers and students through a fun activity.

Hambright kindergarten teacher Jocelyn Hockley invited her husband, Lancaster City Police Detective Ryan Hockley, to participate. He recruited six others - Officer Carlos Luciano, Detective Sgt. Kurt Miller, Detective Willard Smith, K9 Officer Ben Bradley and Sgt. Chris McCormick, all of Lancaster City Police, and Officer Phil Eck of Manor Township Police.

The group of policemen held their own against the two groups of students, which included the children of two of the officers. After the games, the police and students shared high-fives and posed for pictures together.


Providence Township To Participate In National Night Out July 27, 2018

The board of supervisors of Providence Township will host a National Night Out (NNO) event on Tuesday, Aug. 7, from 6 to 9 p.m. at the municipal facility, 200 Mount Airy Road, New Providence. The event will be supported by township employees and volunteers. No cost will be charged for any part of the event.

"The board wanted to have an appreciation picnic for the residents, like it had several years ago," explained zoning officer Heidi Martinez, who has helped to organize the event. "About 50 people had attended, but they would like to have more this year, so they combined the picnic with National Night Out."

NNO is an annual event in its 35th year. It was created to develop awareness of crime and drug prevention, generate local anti-crime efforts, strengthen neighborhood spirit and partnerships between police departments and the communities they serve, and send a message that neighborhoods are organized and fighting against crime. The Pennsylvania State Police will participate in Providence Township's event, as will the Rawlinsville and Quarryville fire companies and Lancaster Emergency Medical Services Association.

Lancaster County Joining Forces, which aims to reduce the number of deaths from opioids and heroin, will be represented, as will a physical therapy group and a vendor of security lighting. A farm equipment seller is slated to bring a tractor or other large apparatus, and Solid Rock Youth Ministries will offer activities for children. A disc jockey will play music.

There will be giveaways from local businesses; free stickers, temporary tattoos, and light-up bracelets for children; and prize drawings for grocery gift certificates, T-shirts, and two rugged coolers. Martinez noted that the event organizers hope to have several children's bicycles to give away as well. Additionally, vouchers for a Lancaster Barnstormers game on Saturday, Aug. 18, will be distributed to 400 NNO attendees.

The members of the board of supervisors, which include chair John Schroeder, vice chair C. William Shaffer, and J. Pepper Goslin, will grill hot dogs and scoop ice cream. Popcorn, water, and other beverages will also be available.

"We are looking forward to having our residents meet our first responders and the board of supervisors because everything (the board does) affects the residents," Martinez remarked.

The event is open to all Southern End residents and will be held rain or shine. In the event of severe weather, updates will be posted at, on the township's Facebook page, and at the municipal building.

For more information about the Providence Township National Night Out event, readers may call the municipal office at 717-786-7596.


National Night Out Planned At Glatfelter Field July 27, 2018

The first Tuesday evening in August has become a special one for Columbia Borough and thousands of other towns across the county, state, and country, as National Night Out events are held to promote police and community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make communities safer places to live. According to, the events offer an opportunity for police officers, firefighters, and EMS personnel and residents to come together under positive circumstances.

Columbia Borough Police Department will host National Night Out from 6 to 9 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 7, at Glatfelter Field, 1249 Lancaster Ave., Columbia. Area residents are invited to attend and enjoy free entertainment, activities, and food.

Nearly 50 local organizations and area businesses will have interactive exhibits at the event. A petting zoo, pony rides, a dunk tank, bounce houses, vehicle displays, a Civil War encampment, kayak rides, a walk-in hot air balloon, and a first responders kickball game will all be part of the fun. The Kracker Beez will perform live music throughout the evening. Free hot dogs, potato chips, ice cream, and beverages will be available, too.

The Columbia Borough Fire Department will do a live demonstration of a vehicle extrication using saws and the Jaws of Life. "That always draws a crowd," remarked Columbia Borough Police Chief Jack Brommer. Another popular part of National Night Out returning this year is a canine demonstration conducted by the Lancaster County Prison K-9 Unit, which will take place at 6 p.m. on the softball field. New this year will be reptile shows by Forgotten Friend Reptile Sanctuary, set for 6:30 and 7:30 p.m. under the large pavilion. A biodegradable balloon release will take place at approximately 8:30 p.m.

As is tradition in Columbia, attendees who bring donations of new school supplies will receive tickets to use in the annual Jail and Bail. Local celebrities, including Columbia Mayor Leo Lutz, Brommer, and Ray McCarty of the Columbia Boys Athletic Association, will be locked in makeshift jail cells at the center of Glatfelter's football field. People may submit the tickets they receive for bringing donations to help the celebrity of their choice to earn enough votes to be released.

The school supplies will be distributed to students in need at all of the public schools in Columbia Borough, as well as Our Lady of the Angels Catholic School and Head Start of Columbia. Requested items include new backpacks, pencils, pens, crayons, rulers, scissors, binders, notebooks, glue sticks, and more. School supplies may also be dropped off at Columbia Life Network, 336 Locust St., Columbia, between 8 a.m. and noon on Mondays through Fridays.

"National Night Out provides us with the opportunity to bring the community together to discuss crime prevention, and it also affords the police department the opportunity to interact on an informal basis with community members," shared Brommer. "The entire event draws the community together."

Brommer emphasized that National Night Out is supported entirely by area businesses and community organizations, including the Columbia-Middletown Elks, Catholic War Veterans, Owls Club, Sunsnappers, American Legion Post 372, Forresters, Hambones Social Club, and Loyal Order of Moose.


Local PDs Invite Residents To Spend A (National) Night Out July 26, 2018

Two local police departments will host events as part of National Night Out (NNO) from 6 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 7. Manor Township Police Department (MTPD) will hold its celebration at Leisure Lanes Bowling & Golf Center, 3440 Columbia Ave., Lancaster, and the Southern Regional Police Department (SRPD) has organized a gathering at West Willow Fire Company, 192 W. Willow Road, Willow Street.

The MTPD has regularly participated in NNO, which is an annual event in its 35th year. This year is the first time that the SRPD has sponsored an event.

SRPD Chief John Michener explained that his department's initiative had its beginnings several months ago at the suggestion of resident Dennis Harding. "In years past, our officers took part in other local NNO events put on by neighboring communities, but Mr. Harding wanted to do one here in Pequea Township," Michener explained. "We had little time and no money budgeted, but thanks to Mr. Harding and the support of other community residents and businesses, we've been able to quickly put together a nice little event for our community."

The SRPD's affair will feature members and equipment from the police department as well as the New Danville and West Willow fire companies and Lancaster Emergency Medical Services Association (LEMSA). Entertainment for children will include a dunk tank, a bounce house, and other activities, and a juggler will perform. Refreshments will be available free of charge as supplies last.

The event at Leisure Lanes will feature police departments from East Hempfield Township, Millersville borough, and Millersville University, as well as the MTPD. Other organizations slated to participate include Blue Rock Fire Rescue, HOPE Animal Assisted Crisis Response, Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, Lancaster DUI Council, Pilot Club International, Pet Pantry of Lancaster County, Lancaster Velo Club, Wilshire Hills Lions Club, Safe Families for Children, Salvation Army, and several local businesses.

Highlights will include face painting, a workout class, and a dunk tank, with Sen. Scott Martin and several police officers taking turns on the wet seat. East Hempfield K-9 officer Bill Watt and his canine partner, Tundra, will give a demonstration of their skills. A variety of food and beverages will be available free of charge.

NNO was created to develop awareness of crime and drug prevention, generate local anti-crime efforts, strengthen neighborhood spirit and partnerships between police departments and the communities they serve, and send a message that neighborhoods are organized and fighting against crime.

"A local police department is only as strong and successful as its relationship and bond with its community," Michener remarked. "I feel that we are fortunate to already have a great relationship with our residents and businesses, but there is always room for improvement and to meet new people. This event is a chance for us to meet more residents and for residents to stand up and make a difference in their neighborhoods."

Michener encourages folks who are unable to attend either of the official events to turn on their exterior lights, lock their doors, and spend time outside with their neighbors.

For more information about the SRPD, readers may call Michener at 717-947-7546. To learn more about the MTPD's event, folks may contact Sgt. Kimberly Geyer at 717-299-5231 or


Hellam Township Police To Host National Night Out July 23, 2018

The Hellam Township Police Department will host its annual National Night Out (NNO) event on Tuesday, Aug. 7, in the grass area at the Hellam Township Municipal Building, 44 Walnut Springs Road, York. The event will take place from 6 to 8 p.m., rain or shine. Area residents are invited to stop by to meet and interact with local police officers, firefighters, and emergency medical services (EMS) personnel and neighbors.

In addition to the Hellam Township Police Department, participants will include the Hellam Fire Company Wrightsville Fire and Rescue Company, and Susquehanna Valley EMS.

Hellam Township secretary Crystal Weston said this is the first time for the event to take place at the Hellam Township Municipal Buildings, as it was held at Barshinger Field in recent years. Organizers hope that the switch in location will be more convenient for everyone involved.

Local nonprofit organizations and community groups such as the Kreutz Creek Library, Gateway Church, Not One More, and WIC will host booths that will offer information about the variety of services they offer.

Activities for children will include face painting, balloon twisting, a bounce house, and a reptile petting zoo. Free goodies including coloring books will be given out to children.

A sheriff from the York County Sheriff's Office will bring a canine companion along for folks to visit with. Live music performances are also planned.

Free snacks, such as fresh fruit, doughnuts, cookies, potato chips, popcorn, cotton candy, and beverages, will be available thanks to donations by several local businesses. Food will also be available to purchase at a concession stand.

Hellam Township manager Corina Mann said that last year's NNO in Hellam drew approximately 150 people, and the event has a perennially positive response from the community.

"It's a great community connection event, and I'd like to see it grow each year," remarked Hellam Township Police Chief Doug Pollock. As of July 1, the Hellam Township Police began covering Wrightsville Borough in addition to Hellam Township and Hallam Borough. Three officers from the Wrightsville Police Department, which disbanded, are now with the Hellam Township Police Department. Pollock said NNO is a good way for residents to get to know the local police officers, firefighters, and emergency responders who are serving the community.

NNO is an annual community-building event held in thousands of towns across the United States on the first Tuesday in August. According to, the campaign promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live. Aside from that, the events offer an opportunity to bring residents and police, fire, and EMS personnel together under positive circumstances.


Fundraiser To Benefit Police July 11, 2018

A fundraising campaign is underway to help equip the New Holland Police Department with Cuddle Bear book and plush sets to offer to children that they encounter during police calls.

The goal, with the help of community members and local businesses, is to provide a way for officers to comfort young children at crash scenes and in other situations where children are traumatized. The practice simultaneously fosters good relationships between police officers and the community they serve.

Through the Literacy for a Lifetime program of Usborne Books and More, donations will be matched at 50 percent. Donations of any amount will be accepted.

The fundraiser will continue through Thursday, July 26. For more details, readers may visit


Board Recognizes Police, Community Members June 20, 2018

The West Hempfield Township board of supervisors presented its annual West Hempfield Township Police Department awards and commendations on May 1 at the board's regularly scheduled monthly meeting at the West Hempfield Township Municipal Building. The honorees were recognized for actions they had taken during 2017.

Officer Robert L. Small and Officer Karl J. Hartranft received the Life Saving Award. The award is given to individuals whose actions prevented the death of a person or persons. On Aug. 25, 2017, officers were dispatched to a hotel, where a person intended to take his own life. The officers successfully defused the situation, and the individual was transported to a local hospital for evaluation. Both Small and Hartranft are trained members of the Lancaster County Crisis Intervention Team.

West Hempfield Township Police Department Corporal Ryan P. Draper; Draper's wife, Erika Draper; and Officer William Ceravola from Reading Township Police Department also received West Hempfield Township Police Department's Life Saving Award. On March 27, 2017, the Drapers and Ceravola were traveling in separate vehicles across the Route 30 bridge between Columbia Borough and Hellam Township when they observed a female standing at the edge of the bridge. The Drapers and Ceravola were able to remove the female from the edge of the bridge, and she was transported to a local hospital for evaluation. Ryan is a trained member of the Lancaster County Crisis Intervention Team. Both he and Ceravola were off duty at the time of the incident.

Officer Richard Bowermaster Jr. of West Hempfield Township Police Department and Officer William Watt of East Hempfield Township Police Department received Commendation Awards, given to an officer for an outstanding act that involved performance above and beyond his or her basic assignment.

Watt and Bowermaster have been leaders in the Beards for Brothers Campaign, a local fund drive started by Watt. Since 2014, officers from across the county have raised money for local first responders and their families who are dealing with cancer or other debilitating disease or organizations that help these individuals and their families. Since 2014, a total of approximately $30,000 has been raised. Monies have gone to two different organizations and to a junior firefighter from West Hempfield Fire and Rescue and the daughter of a Lancaster City police officer, both of whom have rare diseases.

Corporals Douglas Ober and Ryan Draper also received Commendation Awards. On Jan. 30, 2017, officers were dispatched to a bank, where a robbery had just occurred. Ober and Draper responded while in civilian clothing and in an unmarked police vehicle. Their investigation led them to locate the subject in a crowded restaurant. The subject was taken into custody without incident and with no other restaurant patrons being endangered.

Officer John J. Schwab received the Perfect Attendance Award, recognizing him for taking no time off during the 2017 calendar year for injury or illness. Additionally, he reported for his scheduled shifts on time and was prepared for duty.

The West Hempfield Township Police Department presented its Certificate of Appreciation to the Paul Revere Leber Post 372 of the American Legion and Buckeye Corrugated Inc. All-Size Division. The Certificate of Appreciation is awarded to citizens, organizations, or businesses that distinguish themselves through the accomplishment of an extraordinary act or service to the police department or to the community.

This year's honorees made significant contributions to the police department, which helped with the purchase of equipment, training supplies, community outreach and educational supplies, and first aid equipment and supplies.

Officer Michael P. Murray received the 2017 Officer of the Year Award. The award is given to an officer who distinguished himself or herself through either an accumulation of exceptional contributions or a single incident and whose actions clearly place the individual well above others of equal rank or grade.

Murray has been a member of the police department since January 2016. He was honored for distinguishing himself as a leader in his number of criminal arrests and in traffic enforcement; for displaying exceptional courage, fortitude, and resourcefulness during critical incidents; and for effectively testifying in numerous criminal prosecutions leading to successful convictions. He was also honored for having a positive attitude, promoting West Hempfield Township, and striving to enhance intradepartmental effectiveness.

Additionally, four officers were recognized for their involvement in saving the lives of six individuals who overdosed on drugs and had to be administered naloxone. All individuals survived because the officers acted quickly and had naloxone on hand. The honorees were Murray, Schwab, Ober, and Hartranft.

Earlier this year, the United States Marine Corps Reserve honored Corporal Douglas Ober, Officer Bart Hollis, and Officer Ben Johnson for their assistance with the 2017 Toys for Tots program.


Resident Designs Police Patch June 15, 2018

Matthew Frey of Mount Joy is a former law enforcement officer who has collected police patches for years. Six years ago, Frey began designing and producing patches for police, fire, and emergency medical services teams, operating his business as Susquehanna Valley Emblems in Mount Joy. When Frey learned that Northwest Regional Police Department was starting its first K9 Unit, he decided to help.

The K9 team consists of handler Officer Tyler Seidel and his partner, Arlo, a German shepherd-Belgian Malinois mix. Starting a K9 Unit is costly, and the success of the unit relies on donations and support from the local community. A K9 patch design was created, and Frey's business produced the new patches and donated a supply to Seidel.


Township, Police Memorialize Schuler June 14, 2018

West Lampeter Township and The Friends of the West Lampeter Township Police Department (WLTPD) recently dedicated a white dogwood tree and a plaque to honor the memory of Detective Jere "Bip" Schuler at the West Lampeter Township Municipal Building. Schuler, a longtime detective with the WLTPD, passed away on Sept. 30, 2017.

Schuler was hired as a West Lampeter Township police officer in 1986 and was promoted to detective in 1992. He was a member of the Lancaster County major crime unit, where he assisted in several high-profile cases. He attended various investigator trainings and was considered an expert interviewer.

Schuler received many awards during his 31 years of dedicated service, including the WLTPD's Officer of the Year Award in 2009. Because of his work in the community, Schuler was awarded the Lancaster County Human Relations Commission Award.


Church Honors Police, Fire Departments June 7, 2018


Friends Of The Force Contributes To Software Purchase June 7, 2018

The West Lampeter Township Police Department (WLTPD) has changed its electronic records management system, and the Friends of the Force has helped to make it possible with a financial gift of $15,000.

WLTPD Chief Brian Wiczkowski explained that in Lancaster County, until recently, practically every policing agency used a records management system called PREX that enabled the departments to input and track incidents. Lancaster County had maintained PREX, but it will cease in 2020. As a result, all of the agencies have had to find replacement systems.

The WLTPD has opted to use an integrated public safety software system created by Pottstown-based CODY. This particular system was selected after considering several options. One of the factors in the new system's favor is that the police departments in Lancaster city and East Lampeter Township are already using it.

"Two of our bigger neighbors had CODY, so it made the most sense for us to go with it," Wiczkowski remarked.

Versions of CODY have been installed on the desktop computers at the police station, located in the township municipal building, 852 Village Road, Lampeter, and on the laptops in the police cruisers. CODY representatives spent several days at the station last fall to train officers and staff members on the system. The WLTPD began using CODY fulltime in January 2018.

Wiczkowski noted that not quite a half-year into using the new system, the department is only scratching the surface of its capabilities. "We're still learning. It's like trying to change a tire while driving," he said.

CODY hosts an annual conference in Hershey, and WLTPD administrative assistant Rachael Odenwalt was among the WLTPD representatives who attended. Each attendee selected which breakout sessions to attend, and Odenwalt opted to learn about running reports and other administrative tasks that can be done through the new system. "For us, being so new (to CODY), it was beneficial for us to keep learning," she said. "We haven't used everything because it's so in-depth."

Other departments in Lancaster County are in the process of switching to CODY; East Hempfield Township has been using the system for five weeks. Until PREX goes dark in 2020, the database will continue to be searchable. An electronic bridge was built from CODY to PREX, so the WLTPD can still access information in that database. Additionally, the new system is able to interface with other electronic records management systems used by Lancaster County agencies, including county dispatch.

"It allows us to do our jobs better - to be more effective and efficient," Wiczkowski commented. "We spend a large percentage of time with a small percentage of people. A lot of the time, the data is already there. We can see how other police departments deal with people, and a tremendous amount of time is saved."

The new system cost $42,000, and the Friends of the Force provided $15,000, which is the largest one-time expenditure by the nonprofit organization, Friends president Jim Kulp noted. The Friends raised the money through its annual donation request letter sent to West Lampeter Township residents.

"(The letter) has worked really well for us," Kulp said. "We're really fortunate."

"The ability to write a $15,000 check saved the township a lot of money (in interest fees)," added Friends treasurer Steve Musser.

The Friends of the Force is a volunteer organization dedicated to supporting the WLTPD. Volunteers are needed to join the Friends to provide fresh ideas and new energy. Interested individuals may email Kulp at to learn more.


Sheriff's Office Welcomes Deputies May 22, 2018

Three new deputies joined the Chester County Sheriff's Office on May 14. During a swearing-in ceremony in Courtroom One of the Chester County Justice Center, Chester County Sheriff Carolyn Bunny Welsh explained that the positions were highly competitive and welcomed the new deputies, Marian "My" Inderelst, Keith Neiswender, and Howard "Larry" Sipple.

Welsh said the three deputies, who already have their Act 120 police certification, will participate in a rigorous 11-week regimen of orientation and field training. Inderelst and Sipple will then travel to Harrisburg for two weeks of state training, a program that Neiswender has already completed.

Inderelst, a Chester County native, began her working life in her family's fourth-generation sand-mining business. After her father sold the company, she became a licensed veterinary technician and worked at the University of Pennsylvania's small animal hospital. As a vet tech, she developed interest in police work through an affiliation with a SWAT team, and she decided to attend the Delaware County Community College's Police Academy. She graduated in 2017 and accepted a part-time position with the West Brandywine Township Police Department. Part of her attraction to the Sheriff's Office was its K-9 Unit.

Neiswender, a native of Birdsboro, graduated from the Montgomery County Community College's Police Academy in 2005 after stints in the Navy and Army National Guard. Neiswender comes to the Chester County Sheriff's Office with experience in the Berks County Sheriff's Office, where he attained the rank of sergeant and worked in a variety of areas, including the civil and warrants divisions, as well as Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. He maintains a strong commitment to fallen law enforcement officers, participating annually in a bike ride to Washington, D.C.

Sipple grew up in a military family, with his father having a military service background and his uncle being employed as a state trooper. Sipple earned an associate degree in arts and sciences from the University of Delaware, joined the Navy, and graduated from the Delaware County Community College's Police Academy in 2002. He spent 13 years with the Caln Township Police Department and has worked part time for the police forces in Sadsbury Township and West Grove.


Agencies Post Road Safety Information May 15, 2018

To encourage safer driving in the state, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) and the State Police recently urged drivers to review and obey driver safety laws that may not be well known among the public.

Pennsylvania's Blind Pedestrians law mandates that the driver of a vehicle yield the right of way to any totally or partially blind pedestrian carrying a visible white cane or accompanied by a guide dog. The driver of the vehicle shall take any precaution necessary, including bringing the vehicle to a stop, to avoid injuring or endangering the pedestrian. This is a summary offense and in punishable by a fine of not less than $50 nor more than $150.

The Prohibiting Use of Hearing Impairment Devices law prohibits any driver from wearing headphones while behind the wheel. The section does not prohibit the use of a headset in conjunction with a cellphone that provides sound through one ear and allows surrounding sounds to be heard with the other. Wearing headphones while behind the wheel limits the driver's ability to hear sirens belonging to emergency responders.

Title 75, Section 3112 under Traffic Control Signals dictates laws surrounding traffic lights. As part of a 2016 amendment, the law includes instruction on what may be done if a driver believes the traffic light is not functioning properly. This includes when the light's sensor does not detect the vehicle. In this case, drivers are instructed to stop in the same manner as they would at a stop sign and proceed when it is safe to do so.

The Unattended Motor Vehicle law limits where a vehicle may be left running and unattended. The law states that a person may not leave a vehicle unattended while the engine is running or while the key is in the ignition. The law, however, does not apply to private property such as private driveways.

The agencies also reminded drivers to always wear a seatbelt and to never drive while impaired.

For more information on highway safety, readers may visit Readers may join the conversation on social media using #PATrafficLaw on Twitter and Facebook.


Police Enjoy Catered Luncheon May 11, 2018

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