HELENA, Mont. (NMB) – The Montana Law Enforcement Academy (MLEA) graduated 60 new officers on Tuesday who will serve in 40 agencies across the state.
Many of the graduates will be serving agencies located in north-central Montana. They include:
- Taylor Matthews, who will serve with the Phillips County Sheriff’s Office
- Joseph Karcher, who will serve with the Toole County Sheriff’s Office
- Jake McMahill, who will serve with the Judith Basin County Sheriff’s Office
- Andre Lugo, who will serve with the Cascade County Sheriff’s Office
- Andrew Ritton, who will serve with the Great Palls Police Department
- Andrew Burton, who will serve Fish, Wildlife and Parks Region 4 in Great Falls. Burton also 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 MLEA and lost his life in the line of duty in 2003.
The ceremony took place at the Civic Center in Helena and included remarks from Attorney General Austin Knudsen, MLEA Administrator Glen Stinar, and class representative Thomas Hsu of the Ravalli County Sheriff’s Office.
MLEA provides basic and advanced training for state, county, city and tribal law enforcement officers in Montana.