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Agriculture cops get "swamp buggy" training to fight rural crime | Events

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Agriculture cops get "swamp buggy" training to fight rural crime
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Agriculture cops get "swamp buggy" training to fight rural crime

SEBRING, Florida- Members of the Florida Agricultural Crimes Intelligence Unit are receiving special swamp buggy training to assist in fighting crime in hard to reach, remote areas of Central Florida.

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Lieutenant Pam Steelman and her colleague Scott Henderson conducted the training with officers from Palm Beach, St. Lucie, Glades, Hendry, Collier, Polk, Lee, Indian River and Highlands counties participating as well as officers from the Seminole Tribe Police Department and Ben Hill Griffin Security. The officers were trained in swamp buggy operation and also participated in an exercise to extricate a swamp buggy from the mud.

The Florida Agricultural Crimes Intelligence Unit is a non-profit organization comprised of law enforcement officers from 36 agencies across the state working in the specialized field of agricultural-related crimes. Its members include Sheriff's deputies, police officers and state wildlife officers as well as investigators from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the state Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

"It's great that we had the location here in Highlands County to use for swamp buggy training," said Highlands County Sheriff's Office Agricultural Deputy Fred Tagtmeier, who organized and participated in the training. "These vehicles are useful in our work but it's important that we know how to operate them properly so we stay safe," Deputy Tagtmeier said.

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