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For More Information Contact:
Capt. David Jude
(502) 782-1780

Kentucky State Police Graduate Third Class from Spanish Language Program

(FRANKFORT, KY) - The Kentucky State Police held graduation ceremonies in Frankfort today for the third class of its Spanish language immersion program. The 19 graduates recognized join 28 others who have completed the course, resulting in a total of 47 individuals who have received the instruction since the program began in 2002.

"These graduates represent our continuing efforts to better serve both Hispanic and non-Hispanic residents throughout the state," said KSP Commissioner Patrick N. Simpson. "Due to the nature of law enforcement, where we often deal with hazardous situations, it is vitally important that we communicate clearly to provide effective service. The result is improved service and protection for all Kentuckians."

Simpson pointed out that recent U.S. Census Bureau population estimates indicate that the number of Hispanics living in Kentucky increased 13.9 percent between 2000 and 2002. This represents a growth from 60,432 to 68,838 over the two-year period. "These figures, along with previous data reporting a 172 percent increase in Hispanic population between 1990 and 2000, confirm a definite trend and we must be prepared for it," he added.

"Trust between an officer and the citizen is a basic principle of law enforcement," explained Simpson, "and trust is built on mutual understanding. It requires not only understanding the language, but also the culture."

"It is imperative that the Kentucky State Police continue its efforts to better serve all of the residents of the Commonwealth," added KSP Lt. Col. Rodney Brewer, Director of Police Services.  "This program demonstrates our dedication and underscores our commitment to eliminating the language and cultural barriers that exist with the growing Hispanic population with which we interact."

The KSP training course is an intense, immersion style program taught by the Kentucky Institute for International Studies. It met daily and concentrated approximately 200 hours of Spanish language and culture studies into an eight-week period. Eligible participants received 12 college credit hours from Murray State University. Graduates of the program achieve different levels of proficiency, but all are conversational and can read Spanish.

"I congratulate all the graduates who have completed this training," said Simpson. "Their commitment in time and effort is an investment that is helping the Kentucky State Police face the challenges of law enforcement in the 21st century. It's an investment we can't afford to ignore."

The graduates recognized at the ceremony included:

Det. Jonathan Tapp, Post 4-Elizabethtown
Trooper Sam Shacklette, Post 4-Elizabethtown
Trooper Nelson Dales, Post 5-Campbellsburg
Trooper Mac McDonald, Post 6-Dry Ridge
Dispatcher Jerry Keathley, Post 6-Dry Ridge
Sgt. Blake Slone, Post 7-Richmond
Trooper Sam Hunt, Post 8-Morehead
Trooper Jim Bowling, Post 8-Morehead
Trooper Kevin Calhoon, Post 12-Frankfort
Dispatcher Christy Hendren, Post 12-Frankfort
Trooper Chris Yavorcik, Post 14-Ashland
Trooper Jamie Stephens, Post 14-Ashland
Trooper Israel Slinker, Post 15-Columbia
Trooper Bobby Day, Special Operations
Det. Cindy Langer, East Drug Enforcement
Det. Tony Janutolo, East Drug Enforcement
Sgt. James Ingram, Cannabis Suppression
Officer Eddie Holmes, Kentucky Vehicle Enforcement
Ms. Marie Allen, Alcoholic Beverage Control

Contact Information for the Kentucky State Police

Kentucky State Police
919 Versailles Road | Frankfort, KY 40601

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