Two local law enforcement officers complete Academy

Haakon County Sheriff’s Deputy Mark Foley and Philip Police Officer David Butler.

Haakon County Sheriff’s Deputy Mark Foley and Philip City Police Officer David Butler have completed the 12 weeks of the Law Enforcement Basic Training Academy in Pierre.

The 123rd session of the academy began on August 29 and graduation was November 18. These, and all officers, are encouraged to continue their education.

Both local men had the same classes. Academy training consisted of 520 hours of instruction spread over the twelve weeks. Testing for each week was on Friday.

The state covered the cost of the training – instruction, lodging, food, etc. – while the local departments were responsible for the salaries and transportation. The academy facility, located east of Pierre, contains dorms, classrooms, and dining and workout facilities. New academy facilities will open in January.

According to Charlie Wharton, Basic Training Coordinator of Law Enforcement Training, the session was made up of 37 officers from towns and counties in the state of South Dakota as well as the Pine Ridge Reservation, and two officers from the Crow Reservation in Montana.

Each session begins with community oriented policing – identifying and developing the partnerships the officers will need to form in their communities.

In addition to the classroom work that extended to 6:00 p.m. on some days, the officers were involved in fitness training. Some mornings began at 6:00 a.m. with two-mile runs and anaerobic exercises.