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December 11, 2008 - Seven New Police Officers Hired

The Rapid City Police Department hired seven new police officers on December 1, 2008.  The seven new officers are in the training process, which begins with five weeks of training at the department.  After that, all of the officers will attend the George S. Mickelson Criminal Justice Center (formerly the SD Law Enforcement Academy) in Pierre for 12 weeks and upon completion will be certified to work as law enforcement officers in South Dakota.  After graduation from the academy in Pierre, the seven officers will begin the department’s 15 week Police Officer Field Training Program.  Upon successful completion of their training phase, they will be assigned a permanent shift for the remainder of their 18 month probationary period.  The recruit class hired on December 1st includes:

Officer Vance Besler is from Bison, South Dakota, graduated from Bison High School, and has studied at Black Hills State University and Dakota State University.  Officer Besler has worked most recently as a sawmill laborer at Pope & Talbot, Inc. in Spearfish, SD.

Officer Jason Everson is from Sturgis, SD, where he graduated from Sturgis Brown High School.  Officer Everson earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Anthropology with a minor in Archaeology from the University of South Dakota in Vermillion, SD. He has also studied at South Dakota State University and the University of Cincinnati.  His most recent employment was as a Corrections Officer for the Western South Dakota Juvenile Services Center in Rapid City.

Officer Elliott Harding is originally from Pierre, SD, and graduated from Carlmont High School in Belmont, California, and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Engineering from the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology in Rapid City.  Officer Harding most recently worked as a Call Center Manager for Knology of the Black Hills in Rapid City.

Officer Evan Harris is from Rapid City, and a graduate of Stevens High School.  Officer Harris earned his Associate in Applied Science, Law Enforcement Technology degree from the Western Dakota Technical Institute in Rapid City, and most recently worked as an Administrative NCO for the South Dakota Army National Guard at Fort Meade, SD.

Officer Sarah Krikac is from Rapid City, and a graduate of Stevens High School.  She attended the University of South Dakota in Vermillion, SD, where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree, with double majors in Criminal Justice and Psychology. Officer Krikac most recently worked as a Juvenile Corrections Officer for the Western South Dakota Juvenile Services Center in Rapid City.

Officer Matthew McCroden is from Chadron, Nebraska, where he graduated from Chadron High School. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice from Chadron State College.  Officer McCroden most recently worked as a Grain Technician for West Plain Grain, Inc., in Chadron, NE.

Officer Kaia Sheets is from Salt Lake City, Utah, where she graduated from Jordan High School. She has attended Pacific Lutheran University, Southern Utah University, and the University of Utah.  She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Organizational Communication from the University of Utah.  Officer Sheets most recently worked as a General Manager for Hills Hospitality in Keystone, SD.

In addition to these seven officers, Chief Allender announced several other recent hirings and promotions.

Part-time Police Officer Ryan Schuler has been re-hired as a full-time Police Officer.  Officer Schuler was first hired as a Police Officer in 1995, and left the Department in 2000 to found a private security business in Rapid City.  He maintained his certification as a SD Law Enforcement Officer, and has worked as a Reserve and part-time Police Officer during his absence.

Evidence Specialist Mark Bartik was hired on December 8, 2008.  Mr. Bartik is originally from Versailles, Ohio, and served in the United States Air Force for 25 years until his retirement in 2008.  He holds Associate of Applied Science degrees in Criminal Justice and Communications Applications Technology.  His most recent assignment was as Intelligence Superintendant at Ellsworth Air Force Base, in Rapid City.  He has six years of law enforcement experience with the USAF Security Forces.

Evidence Specialist Elizabeth Schwab was hired on December 1, 2008.  Ms. Schwab is from Rapid City, and a graduate of Stevens High School.  She received a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, and most recently worked as a Criminalist for the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in New York, New York.

Acting Sergeant Tom Senesac has been promoted to the rank of Sergeant, effective November 21, 2008.  Sergeant Senesac will remain assigned to the Support Services Division in charge of Records and Training.  He was hired by the Department as a patrol officer in 1985, and was promoted to Detective in 1993.

Detective Mark Eisenbraun has been promoted to the rank of Sergeant and reassigned to the Field Services Division, effective December 1, 2008.  Sergeant Eisenbraun began his career with the Department on Oct ober 1, 1996, and was promoted to Detective in April 2006.


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