The Clewiston Police Department (CPD) announced that five officers have joined their dive team after receiving extensive training last week.
CPD formed its dive team in 2009 and since then, the seven-member team has been responsible for recovering pertinent pieces of evidence from local bodies of water. The team has also assisted other agencies in recovering items of evidence, including deceased persons and vehicles.
Apart from recovering evidence, the CPD dive team also helps the city of Clewiston with boat dock repairs and pump repairs at the golf course. The dive team uses these extra hours as a means for additional training, as working with tools underwater helps improve their dexterity; the city of Clewiston, on the other hand, has enjoyed approximately $10,000 in savings because the dive team makes repairs on a volunteer basis.
Officers Steve Chamberlain, Nicholas Williams and Buffie McLeod, as well as Auxiliary Officer Darrin McNeil and Sergeant Curtis Clay joined veteran members Lieutenant Chad Pelham and Auxiliary Officer Debbie McNeil after receiving their certification on March 12. Lt. Pelhman is the dive commander for the team and holds numerous certifications, including Black Water diving. Auxiliary Officer McNeil also holds the same certifications as Lt. Pelham.
The new members still have training they must endure, even after being certified, but are looking forward to being part of the team and to the new opportunity in their careers.