Hazelwood Police Explorers take top honors at national competition

HAZELWOOD, Mo. – A group of Hazelwood teens was involved in a burglary, a shooting, and a traffic accident. These young people weren’t in trouble, however. In fact, they took top honors in a national competition.

The group took part in the National Enforcement Explorer Conference at Purdue University from July 15 to July 21. It placed first in an event called Non-Emergency Vehicle Operations. Team members were required to maneuver a police vehicle through a coned course.

“They were really excited. And that’s what we do it for. Because not only to give them the experience and teach them, but to give them those experiences and to see them kind of light up, and get excited about police work,” Hazelwood Officer William Russ said.

Hazelwood’s Police Explorer program works with young people ages 15 to 21.

The men and women were among 1,500 explorers who attended the event from explorer posts from across the country and Puerto Rico.

The group was recognized for its achievement at Hazelwood City Hall.

“It’s big for me because I’ll be able to put that on my resume. I was recognized by the Hazelwood for the Police Department and that will make me look good within the department,” said Samantha Tiemann, 17.