DOJ: News Release

Montana Law Enforcement Academy Graduates 55 New Officers

Montana Law Enforcement Academy Graduates 55 New Officers

At a ceremony this morning, the Montana Law Enforcement Academy graduated 55 new officers who will serve 27 different agencies across the state. The Montana Law Enforcement Academy is operated by the Montana Department of Justice, providing basic and advanced training for state, county, city and tribal law enforcement officers throughout the state.

“You men and women graduating today are now joining the ranks of those Montana unsung heroes,” Attorney General Tim Fox told the graduates. “By virtue of the solemn responsibilities you are about to shoulder, and the character you have demonstrated thus far, you have my respect and admiration. I have confidence that you will always rise to the occasion and do your duty in the highest traditions of Montana law enforcement.”

The class elected Billings Police Officer Todd Clyatt to speak on its behalf during the ceremony. “We came from a wide range of backgrounds and cultures but we have come together as professionals and friends,” he said. Referring to the oath the new officers swore, Clyatt told his fellow graduates that “what it looks like to serve mankind will be little different for all of us, whether it is clearing cattle from a roadway, keeping the peace on a hot summer night or being the only glimmer of hope for someone who cannot see any light at the end of the tunnel. I encourage all of you to put your best effort in everything you do. Today we will leave as officers, deputies, and troopers but you will be tomorrows chiefs, sheriffs, and trainers.”

Several of the graduates received awards for their performance during training:

• Billings Police Officer Todd Clyatt received the Don Williams Award, which is given to the officer elected by the class as Class Representative. The award is given in memory of Thompson Falls Police Chief Don Williams, who was killed in the line of duty in 1974.

• Butte-Silver Bow Law Enforcement Officer Bryce Foley received the Health and Physical Fitness Award, which is given to the officer in each class who participates and excels in the Hard Rock Challenge and achieves the class’s best score in the Montana Physical Abilities Test.

• Butte-Silver Bow Law Enforcement Officer Bryce Foley also received the Paul Williams Award, which is given to the officer in each class who has provided great inspiration to the staff and student through his display of unwavering dedication and determination. The award is given in memory of the late Chouteau County Sheriff Paul Williams.

• Butte-Silver Bow Law Enforcement Officer Bryce Foley also received the Jack Wiseman Award, which is given to the officer in each class who is selected by his peers as the most outstanding officer. The officers of each class select the recipient by pondering two questions: 1) if you were a law enforcement agency administrator, who would you most want to hire? 2) if it were 2am and things were going bad quickly, who would you most want to know was coming to help you? The award is given in tribute to Jack Wiseman, who served as a training officer and commander at the Montana Law Enforcement Academy for more than 22 years.

• Butte-Silver Bow Law Enforcement Officer Christopher Snyder received the Joe May Award, which is given to the office in each class who displays exceptional leadership and an incredible sense of motivation. The award is given in honor of the late Joe May, one of the people credited with the conception and creation of the Montana Law Enforcement Academy.

• Cascade County Sheriff Deputy Justin Kambic received the Glenn Janes Award, which is given to the student in each class who demonstrates the highest level of proficiency in the Police Vehicle Operation Course. The award is given in honor of Montana Highway Patrol Trooper Glenn Janes, who served as a driving instructor at the Montana Law Enforcement Academy.

• Mineral County Sheriff Deputy Tim Case received the Jimmy Kaaro award, which is given to the officer who achieves the highest level of academic standing in each class. Case has an overall average of 98.49% on all academic course work. The award is given in honor of retired Fergus County Sheriff Jimmy Kaaro.

• Missoula Police Officer Henry Jensen received the Josh Rutherford Award, which is given to the officer in each class who achieves the highest scores in defensive tactics. The award is given in memory of Blaine County Deputy Sheriff Josh Rutherford, who was a defensive tactics instructor with the Montana Law Enforcement Academy when he lost his life in the line of duty in 2003.

• Missoula Police Officer Henry Jensen also received the Alex Mavity Award, which is given to the student from each class who achieves the highest accumulated score on all academic and skills-based training. The award is given in honor of Billings Police Department Detective Alex Mavity, who was killed in the line of duty in 1989.

• Missoula Police Officer Caitlyn Olds received the Hal Vogelsang Award, which is given to the officer in each class who displays the highest degree of fidelity as determined by the academy staff. The recipient has demonstrated exceptional qualities of honor, pride, integrity, duty, loyalty, and service to not only the class but the staff and entire profession. The award is given in honor of Hal Vogelsang, who served as an FBI special agent for more than 36 years and as a training officer at the Montana Law Enforcement Academy for more than 25 years.

• Sidney Police Officer Laura Finn received the Allen Kimery Award, which is given in recognition of outstanding marksmanship and the class’s highest ranking in firearms training through marksmanship, safety, and tactical proficiency. The award is given in honor of Missoula County Sheriff Deputy Allen Kimery, who was killed in the line of duty in 1984.

Roster of class #151:

Erik Miller, Anaconda-Deer Lodge County Law Enforcement
Kristopher Vauthier, Anaconda-Deer Lodge County Law Enforcement
Ryan James, Baker Police Department
Michael Miles, Beaverhead County Sheriff’s Office
Jack Brundell, Billings Police Department
Todd Clyatt, Billings Police Department
Eric Schnelbach, Billings Police Department
Brian Weaver, Billings Police Department
James Duddy, Butte-Silver Bow Law Enforcement
Bryce Foley, Butte-Silver Bow Law Enforcement
Christopher Snyder, Butte-Silver Bow Law Enforcement
Steven Fox, Cascade County Sheriff’s Office
Justin Kambic, Cascade County Sheriff’s Office
Michael Hingiss, Chouteau County Sheriff’s Office
Joe Horrocks, Dillon Police Department
Shelley Burton, Flathead County Sheriff’s Office
Bryce Middleton, Flathead County Sheriff’s Office
Josh Roberge, Fort Belknap Tribal LEA
Brandon Martell, Fort Peck Tribal LEA
Mikkel Shields, Fort Peck Tribal LEA
Guy Stefani, Golden Valley County Sheriff’s Office
Aaron McAdam, Great Falls Police Department
Cassandra Munari, Great Falls Police Department
Eric Munkres, Great Falls Police Department
Jordan Chroniger, Havre Police Department
Brian Hines, Lake County Sheriff’s Office
Steven Gaertner, Miles City Police Department
Tim Case, Mineral County Sheriff’s Office
Meliss Crane, Mineral County Sheriff’s Office
Travis Wafstet, Missoula County Sheriff’s Office
Henry Jensen, Missoula Police Department
Caitlyn Olds, Missoula Police Department
Salisha Stufflebeam, Missoula Police Department
Mark Bidne, Montana Highway Patrol
David Inman, Montana Highway Patrol
Andrew Leigland, Montana Highway Patrol
Jeremy Lundblad, Montana Highway Patrol
Zachariah Miller, Montana Highway Patrol
Nikolaus Petrusaitis, Montana Highway Patrol
Aariad Ream, Montana Highway Patrol
Kirk Robbins, Montana Highway Patrol
Laramie Stefani, Montana Highway Patrol
Brian Thorne, Montana Highway Patrol
Brandon Velasquez, Montana Highway Patrol
Steve Hicks, Motor Carrier Services
Scott Horsley, Motor Carrier Services
Jonathan Larson, Motor Carrier Services
Lydia Wegner, Motor Carrier Services
John Gatlin, Powder River County Sheriff’s Office
Tom Evans, Pre-Service
John Mitchell, Ronan Police Department
Laura Finn, Sidney Police Department
Ian Anderson, Toole County Sheriff’s Office
Trey Nasset, Whitefish Police Department
Joseph Olsen, Wolf Point Police Department

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