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Virginia State Police

Media Release

News Release No. 1

For Immediate Release: January 7, 2016


RICHMOND – Virginia’s Finest will welcome 74 additional new Troopers and one Special Agent Accountant to

the Department’s ranks Friday, Jan. 8, 2016, following the 123rd Basic Session’s graduation ceremony.

Commencement exercises begin at 10 a.m. in the Virginia State Police Gymnasium at 7700 Midlothian

Turnpike in North Chesterfield.

“Law enforcement is one of the most honorable calls to service,” says Colonel W. Steven Flaherty, Virginia

State Police Superintendent. “Why endure 28 weeks of a physical, emotional and demanding academic

environment? It’s because the men and women who take this oath have a passion to protect their communities

and understand what it means to sacrifice and serve.”

A highlight of the graduation ceremony is when the new troopers receive their state

police diplomas. Typically, Colonel Flaherty hands them their certificate but in some

instances, the new trooper can select a family member who currently serves or is

retired from a local, state or federal law enforcement agency. This year, 12 members of

the 123rd Basic School will receive their diploma from such a family member.

The state police graduates are comprised of individuals from every part of the

Commonwealth to also include the states of Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New

Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. The class also graduates an individual born in

the Czech Republic. Many in the class sought out the Virginia State Police because “I have always wanted to

be in law enforcement, and help protect and serve my family and community” and “my family and I owe a great

deal to the nation and state due to the opportunities granted to us and my service to the Department, the state

and the nation is the least I could do.”

A number of the new troopers, prior to entering the Academy served with other law enforcement agencies

and/or with a branch of the military. The 123rd Basic Session yields more than 50 years of previous law

enforcement and corrections experience, as well as almost 135 years of prior military service.

Members of the 123rd Basic Session began their probationary training phase Feb. 25, 2015, followed by 28

weeks of academic, physical and practical training at the Academy. The probationary phase requires trainees

to complete two and a half weeks of introductory training at the Academy before being assigned to a Field

Training Officer (FTO). The new troopers have received more than 1,600 hours of classroom and field

instruction in more than 100 different subjects, including crime scene investigation, survival Spanish, judicial

procedures, self defense, cultural diversity and firearms.

Following graduation, the new troopers’ final phase of training begins Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2016, when they

report for their individual duty assignments. Each trooper will spend a minimum of six weeks with an FTO

learning his or her new patrol area and day-to-day duties.

Individual trooper’s photos are available to the media via e-mail.

Please contact Ms. Deborah Cox at


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