State revokes police certification for five, accepts surrendered certification of four others

Casey Grove

The Alaska Police Standards Council voted to revoke state certification for five law enforcement officers and accepted the surrendered certification of four others at its Dec. 3 meeting in Anchorage.

The 13-member panel is appointed by the governor and certifies police officers, state troopers, correctional officers and others to work in law enforcement in Alaska. The group also has the power to revoke the certification if an officer fails to meet minimum standards under state law.

Also by law, the council and its members are not allowed to discuss publicly the reasons why a particular officer's certification is under scrutiny or, after the fact, why it was revoked, said Kelly Alzaharna, the council's executive director.

Some who lost their badges have been charged with criminal offenses. The circumstances of others remain unknown due to the council's rules and requirements by individual departments not to discuss personnel matters.

Those who surrendered their certification at the Dec. 3 meeting are:

• Stephen Rabender, formerly of the Kotzebue Police Department

• John Havard, former chief of the Galena Police Department

• Troy Wilson, a Juneau police lieutenant who admitted in court in April to shooting at other officers responding to a 911 call to his home

• Kevin Pridmore, an ex-Anchorage police officer

Those who had their certification revoked by the council are:

• Michael Barnett, a former Dillingham police officer

• Cory Dayton, a former correctional officer at Lemon Creek Correctional Center in Juneau

• Jeremy Hoffman, a former correctional officer at Fairbanks Correctional Center

• Dean Whisler, a former correctional officer at Palmer Correctional Center

• Steven Much, an ex-Anchorage police officer charged with felony theft in February

The council meets twice a year. It reviews about 40 employees total each year, Alzaharna said. There are about 3,000 men and women certified by the council.

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