Police welcome officer to force

A Scottsburg man with a background in automotive painting and data collection has switched careers to patrolling the streets as Seymour’s newest police officer.

Ryan Cherry, 30, said his desire to wear the uniform came from wanting to help others.

“I wanted to be a police officer in order to be able to help people as well as serve a community,” he said.

For the past four years, he has been a volunteer with the Scottsburg Fire Department. He is a certified firefighter through the Department of Homeland Security and has certifications in first aid/CPR and hazmat response.

“I believe the training I’ve received as well as responding to emergency calls while on the fire department also will be helpful as I start my new career with Seymour Police Department,” he said.

Cherry fills one of two vacancies, Chief Bill Abbott said.

His first day on the job was Oct. 12 after being sworn in by Mayor Craig Luedeman at the Seymour Board of Public Works and Safety meeting. Since then, he has been training for his new position, including a 40-hour pre-basic law enforcement class, a defensive tactics class, firearms and emergency vehicle operations.

On Nov. 16, he will leave to attend the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy in Plainfield. For 16 weeks, he will receive advanced training in a variety of areas, including criminal and traffic law, firearms, accident investigation, domestic violence, crime prevention, and drugs and narcotics.

Cherry said he doesn’t have a specific area he’s most interested in, but he is looking forward to learning as much as he can to do the job to the best of his ability.

“I am very interested in all specialties of law enforcement, detective work, drug work, K-9. I’d like to learn as much as possible in all aspects of the job,” he said.

Although he has no law enforcement or criminal justice experience, Cherry said, he has a drive and determination to succeed in everything he does.

His educational background and work experi-ence is in automotive refinishing.

“I previously worked as an automotive painter for eight years,” he said. “Before getting the job with SPD, I worked for a company called Tyler Technologies as an appraisal residential lister doing data collection work for the county assessors in Scott and Jennings counties.”

He is most looking forward to putting the uniform on for the first time, he said. The responsibilities that come with wearing that uniform are not something he takes lightly, he added.

“I believe it is important for communities to support law enforcement because they are a big part of community safety and helping others,” he said. “I think the police can stay active in patrolling communities, in community functions and in doing educational functions and programs in schools.”

Cherry lives in Scottsburg with his wife, Megan, and their two young sons.