After more than eight months of training, nine recruits officially joined the ranks of the South Dakota Highway Patrol during a graduation ceremony in the Capitol Rotunda on Friday.
The nine new troopers, formally members of Class 53, completed basic law enforcement training, followed by the South Dakota Highway Patrol Recruit Academy. From mid-May until graduation day, they were in field training. The period from initial application to graduation is about one year.
Lt. Gov. Matt Michels joined family and friends of the new troopers for the ceremony. He told the new troopers that law enforcement officers are critically important to our free society.
"Please remember there are hundreds of thousands of South Dakotans who appreciate you," said Lt. Gov. Michels. "With every action you take, and even with every ticket you give, you will be motivating people to obey the law."
At the conclusion of the ceremony, the recruits officially became members of the Highway Patrol and left for their initial duty stations. Several of the new troopers were scheduled to be on duty as early as Saturday, July 27.
The troopers and their duty stations are: Bill Berry, Sturgis; Aric Dierkhising, Wall; Ben Filipiak, Kadoka; Brandon Hansen, Elk Point; Brandon Mathistad, Rapid City; Kyle Mobley, Pierre; Matt Robl, Huron; Steve Tow, Redfield; Adam Woxland, Winner.