Police and Fire Reports
By Annette Christie
Coloma Township Police Officers received information that a wanted person was living at a residence in the 6800 block of Pine Ct. Officers went to the house on the afternoon of January 17, 2017 and made contact with the 41-year-old Coloma man who was subsequently taken into custody on warrants out of Van Buren County and the Michigan State Police. The subject was lodged in the Berrien County Jail.
On January 22, 2017 at approximately 3:53 a.m. a Coloma Township Police Officer was dispatched to a home in the 5000 block of Red Arrow Hwy. for a possible domestic violence call. The officer made contact with a female occupant who advised that no one else was home.
After further investigation, it was found that the occupant, a 26-year-old Coloma woman, had a warrant for her arrest out of Benton Township. The woman was taken into custody without incident and lodged at the Berrien County Jail.
Watervliet Fire Department annual awards banquet
WATERVLIET FIREFIGHTERS HONORED… Awards were presented at the Annual Water-vliet Fire Department Banquet. Shown are the award winners and leadership from the depart-ment (from the left): Chief Dan Jones, Justin Scheetz, David Woodward (Recipient of the Firefighter of the Year Award), Kyle Christopher (Recipient of the George Huscher Most Im-proved Firefighter Award), and Billy Whitney Jr.
This past Saturday, the Watervliet Fire Department held their annual awards banquet at the Coloma FOP Lodge.
The first award presented is the George Huscher, Most Improved Fire Fighter Award. The award is given in memory of George Huscher who was a member of the department and lost his life in an automobile accident several years ago.
George had been awarded the Most Improved Firefighter just prior to his death. Therefore, the department saw it fitting to name the Most Improved Fire Fighter Award in his honor.
The award is voted on by the fire department’s officers for the member that has shown the greatest improvement throughout the year in all facets of the fire service. This year the award was given to Firefighter Kyle Christopher.
Kyle began his career with the Watervliet Fire Department just a few short years ago, in September of 2014. Since that time, he has successfully completed Firefighter I and II programs, made it through his probationary period, completed Medical First Responder training, obtained a NREMT MFR certification and received a state license.
Chief Dan Jones said, “Kyle continues to work diligently at expanding his fire service knowledge base. In his time at Watervliet Fire, he has exhibited a ‘positive attitude’ attempting any task thrown his way, and even in failure getting up brushing himself off and trying again with a true spirit of determination. Kyle’s strong desire to learn should stand as example for other up and coming firefighters within our department. It is my sincere desire that in the years to come Kyle will continue to grow professionally and seek out more responsibility within our department. Kyle is a true asset to this department as well as to our community.”
The second award given that evening was The Fire Fighter of the Year Award; it is presented to the member that has shown great dedication throughout the year, not just in firefighting capacity, but also in all the other activities that the members participate in. The entire Fire Department’s membership votes on the Fire Fighter of the Year Award.
The award was presented to Safety Officer David Woodward. David is a long-standing member of the Southwestern Michigan Fire Service community having begun his career way back last century; David spent many tireless years at Coloma Fire, Coloma Ambulance and North Berrien Fire Rescue serving in every capacity from Firefighter to Acting Chief. After his decision to leave Coloma, David perhaps thought that he had finally “escaped” the entangling web of the Fire Service only to be drawn back in by the magical allure of Watervliet Fire in the summer of 2014. David has the ability to always be available when we need him the most.
Chief Dan Jones said, “Since becoming a member, David has been very active in all facets of our department, providing assistance where ever and how ever needed. His many years of past experience and vast knowledge have made him invaluable and a ‘go to’ person by many members of our department. David’s training and past experience makes him uniquely qualified to serve as the departmental Safety Officer, duties that he takes very seriously as is evidenced by our safety record. S.O. Woodward continues to prove his worth while demonstrating that even we old guys can still ‘getter done’. He serves as a true role model for all area fire service personnel regardless of department.”
Jones added, “These two gentlemen are great assets to the department and our community and we are very proud of their accomplishments.”
In 2016, the Watervliet Fire Department responded to 390 total calls.
Lockdown at Hartford High School
By Jon Bisnett
From the desk of Superintendent Andy Hubbard, at approximately 11:45 a.m. Tuesday, January 24, in conjunction with local authorities and Hartford High School Principal Dave Janicki, the decision was made to place the High School Campus in lockdown status in response to a non-specific threatening statement found written on a restroom wall. The police were immediately called in and following a thorough investigation, it was deemed that no viable threat to students, staff or property was imminent, thus lifting the lockdown at approximately 1:00 p.m. to resume normal school operations. The Hartford Police Department will continue to investigate the matter and seek appropriate actions against the perpetrator.
Thanks go out to the parents for reacting appropriately as the event unfolded. It is recognized that a lockdown can be frightening at times to both students and parents alike. Superintendent Hubbard encourages discussion with your child. Be aware that free counseling services are available if follow-up is needed.
As always the board and administration pledge that the safety of their students and staff remains their primary concern.
Questions may be directed to Superintendent Andy Hubbard at (269)621- 7001 or High School Principal Dave Janicki at (269)621-7101.