By Police Chief Gary Hall
The Walker River Tribal Police Department has begun the first Tribal Police Explorer Program in the State of Nevada and only the fifth in the Nation in Indian Country. A recruitment night was set up for March 14 flyers and posters had been put out to the community for weeks. Representatives from the Boy Scouts of American and the Police Department as well as the Tribal Council were all present and hoping for enough applicants to arrive and sign up.
The required minimum was five youth and five adults to become a recognized Explorer Post. To increase our odds of having a good turnout we did what all experienced administrators do in Indian County, we advertised free pizza and sodas to all who came. We were blessed to have many youth, parents and community members just interested in seeing what the Tribe was offering to the youth show up and ask questions.
As the meeting began and the soda flowed and pizzas shrunk, more and more community members arrived. The program was explained by the Boy Scouts of America representatives and the Chief of the Police Department. Applications were handed out and completed, most with the parents present and cosigning the applications.
Applicants are accepted from the entire community ages 14 through 20 years old, many under 14 years old are anxiously awaiting their birthdays so they can join. The Department now has eight solid Explorers, six young ladies and two young men. The adults were easy to sign up four from the Police Department and the Tribal vice-chairman. The program was sanctioned by the Boy Scouts of America and given the Post number we requested 1864 which represents the year the Walker River Paiute Tribe was founded.
The Explorers voted to hold meetings once each week which we do each Wednesday evening; they last from 1.5 to 2 hours each time. They voted on their Chairman-Juliah Brown and Secretary-Lillianna Sanchez. In the meetings they completed their required basic training prior to being eligible to go on Ride-Alongs. Those classes are: First Aid; CPR/AED; Blood Borne Pathogens; Traffic Control; Crowd Control; Patrol Procedures and Vehicle Equipment and Communications. At this time seven of the eight Explorers have completed their basic training and are going out on Ride-Alongs.
The Explorers have learned how to set up and instruct the Drunk Busters DUI course which involves a subject wearing goggles which simulate various stages of intoxication and drug impairment. The Explorers will then instruct subjects in the performance of the One Legged Stand and Walk and Turn tests followed by riding a pedal cart through a course set up with cones. The purpose is to teach our youth about the dangers of Alcohol Abuse and Drunk Driving. The Explorers have already learned to walk in formation and were very proud to walk in the Hawthorne 67th Armed Forces Day Parade. One Explorer Lillianna Sanchez is also the Walker River Pine Nut Princess and therefore was in the parade in that capacity. However, her little sister Asaya Sanchez, six years old filled in for her and walked the entire parade route in her sister’s place.
Our Walker River Tribal Police Explorers are: Jeidan Brown, Juliah Brown, Ysela Brown, Alexceah Emm, Cayce McMinn, Lilliana Sanchez, Marcellus Schaffer and Julieanna Williams.
The Explorers Program is open for enrollment any time. The Walker River Paiute Tribe and the Walker River Tribal Police Department thank the Boy Scouts of America for making this program possible for our youth.