Vol. 16, No. 39, Mar 29, 2004




This Reveille Home Page

Hunter the Winning Ticket (Patrol Sergeant Monica Hunter)

We Get Emails

District Conference — Last Chance for the Train to Portland

A Night at the Village Theater

Friday Potpourri

Annual Planning Retreat in La Conner

O’Brien Explains New Venture

Classification Talk: Rob LoBosco

Two Grants Awarded by Community Service

Rotary First Harvest - A Report from Kevin Jewell

Our Correspondent in the South Pacific (Colin Radford)

Web Fun

Hunter the Winning Ticket


Hunter1One of the most familiar faces in the community brought her infectious laugh and big smile to the BBRC Friday. Washington State Patrol Sergeant Monica Hunter began her career in law enforcement in 1996, when she sought a job that would keep her closer to raising her son. “I was a single mom and had early careers in cosmetology and as a flight attendant. I heard about the WSP looking for new recruits, took the exam and ranked number one! Now, this is my job and I love it!”

Monica said she loves coming to meetings and, in fact, revealed she may be planning to join Rotary. Rourke, representing Membership Recruitment, spent some quality time with Monica after the meeting.

“Our work is ramping up. So many cold cases are being solved. Support for victims of crime is taking a lot of the time of law enforcement. The WSP’s Aggressive Driver’s campaign is focusing on the errant driver. In the last three months, over 1000 aggressive drivers have been ticketed in King County alone. It’s ‘good pickin’s,’ as we say.”

Monica’s job is Public Information. In addition to a morning stint as the traffic reporter on KOMO-TV4, Monica spends a lot of time educating drivers. “We have a huge problem with our drivers. When you think of the alternatives, it’s not horrible to get a ticket, but it’s horrible to get in a crash or to cause one. People are more aggressive and less sensitive on the roads today. Road rage is a problem. Unsafe lane changes cause many of our problems ... we all have blind spots. As drivers and citizens, we’re all very busy ... driving isn’t personal. But not concentrating on the road and following good driving etiquette is a recipe for trouble.”

Trooper Hunter talked about unmarked cars and rhetorically asked, “What discretion does a trooper have to give out tickets?” Fifty percent of the people who get pulled over get tickets. The Patrol is out to educate people as well. Driving without insurance is a big issue. It’s up to the trooper to decide whether to give a ticket. There are no quotas.

The Statewide Amber Alert program is working well. “It’s a great program, bringing all of the force of the police together with the public to help solve crimes in progress. It appears that drunk drivers are still a threat. Some 400 drunks a month in King County are ticketed by the WSP.

Turning the program over to questions, Monica talked about some of the new technology available to law enforcement. “In our Aggressive Driving and DUI Patrols, we are helped by the new video cameras installed in the cars. Yes, the courts will decide a driver’s fate, but the cameras help to show what really happened.” She said the Click It or Ticket emphasis on wearing of seatbelts is receiving 97% compliance.

Responding to a question regarding the high number of Breathalyzer tests thrown out in court, Monica said it’s up to the officer to present a good case.

HunterEvisonAggressive driving is defined as “drivers going in and out of traffic at high speeds and following too closely. Drivers today travel at unbelievable speeds. We can’t cite them unless they’re seen breaking the law.” She talked about the "Gore Point," those spots on the freeway from onramps into the traffic flow. “These lead into and out of merging areas on freeway. The Gore Point is where the solid white lines meet, allowing drivers to smoothly merge into traffic. You’re not supposed to cut until the Gore Point is passed.”

Monica gave a good pitch for recruiting new officers to the Patrol. “It’s important work we do and the rewards are great. Even Frank Young says we’re nice. We get few complaints about our work. (How does Frank know the Patrol is nice?) Monica closed by saying as a single mother, she learned early on that to have a good son, she’d have to be a good mom. Her 9-year-old son naturally receives much of her attention.

Thanks to Steve Goldfarb for his introduction. President Evison gave Monica a certificate for her presentation, noting that a book has been donated in her name to a child in the Bellevue schools.







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