Two New Troopers Assigned to Chehalis Area; Awards Granted at State Patrol Graduation


Among 43 newly-commissioned troopers for the Washington State Patrol, two, Alexander T. Berea and Trace E. Bybee, will be placed in Chehalis.

The Washington State Patrol held its 117th Trooper Basic Training (TBTC) graduation ceremony at the Capitol Rotunda on Wednesday, marking the completion of more than 1,400 hours of rigorous training, including classroom and practical exercises at the state patrol academy in Shelton, according to a news release. 

The training culminated with a coaching trip where the cadets worked alongside a field training officer.

The combined efforts of the 117th TBTC class resulted in 9,056 driver contacts, 2,777 calls for service, the removal of 492 impaired drivers from roadways, 926 collision investigations and 1,613 motorist assists, according to the release.

State Patrol Chief John R. Batiste, a member of the 55th Trooper Basic Training Class, thanked the new troopers and their families for their dedication to being a part of the future of the agency, saying, “Everything that has been shared with you has prepared you for this day. … Don’t doubt yourself — you are more than ready.”

Batiste, alongside Gov. Jay Inslee, congratulated each graduate, providing them with their commission cards signifying they were now officially WSP troopers.

“On behalf of the seven million folks of the great state of Washington, I thank you for your willingness to do this job,” Batiste said. “We are living in difficult times, and your willingness to do this particular work is admirable; I thank you for that.”

Individual awards were given to new troopers in the following categories:

• Top Academic Award: Trooper Christian J. Freund, for the cadet who attains the highest grade-point average compiled from more than 30 exams and quizzes.

• Top Driving Award: Freund, for the highest level of proficiency with respect to driving skills, techniques, decision-making, mindset and the steady and constant improvement through each phase of drive training, according to the news release.

• Top Firearms Award: Trooper Jordan R. Jacobs, for the highest level of proficiency with all weapons systems, marksmanship scores, skills and demonstration of sound judgment during practical encounter scenarios.

• Top Physical Fitness Award: Trooper Kristyn N. Boyes, for the highest level of drive and tenacity in physical fitness testing and training, according to the release. The recipient of this award consistently performed at the top of the TBTC during physical training.

• Top Control Tactics Award: Trooper Daniel J. Menihane Jr., for proficiency in control tactics techniques, to include self-defense, handcuffing, searching and the use of force thought process.

• Top Collision Investigation Award: Trooper Logan C. Lambert, regarding collision investigation, including mathematical computation, scene investigation, evidence gathering, report writing and teamwork.

• Top Communications Award: Trooper Timothy J. Hipps, for the highest level of efficiency of radio communications knowledge, based upon testing and practical exercises.

• Top Overall Cadet Award: Trooper Joshua T. Hudson, for the trooper cadet who demonstrated great courage to overcome obstacles, unwavering dedication to stay focused in reaching their goals and their ability to give 100% in every aspect of their training. 

“Trooper Hudson demonstrated the necessary skills, abilities and judgment to be an excellent trooper, and made the efforts to make continuous improvements,” the release stated.

• Core Values Award: Freund. The award is determined by the anonymous vote of the members of the 117th TBTC for the trooper who classmates feel best exemplified the training division’s core values of strong leadership, effective partnerships, professional excellence, acting with integrity and accountability, respecting and protecting individual rights and earning the trust and confidence of the public.

The Core Values Award is sponsored by the WSP Memorial Foundation and is presented in honor of the most recent WSP trooper who gave their life in the line of duty. Wednesday’s award was given in honor of Detective Eric T. Gunderson, who died in the line of duty on Sept. 26, 2021. Trooper Gunderson’s wife, Kami Gunderson, presented the award to Freund.