HONOLULU - During a ceremony on Friday, six experienced law enforcement officers became the first graduates of the DLNR Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement (DOCARE) Academy. Over the course of six weeks the officers, all of whom come from municipal, state or federal police agencies, received immersive training in conservation enforcement. 

The state says this first DOCARE Training Academy is considered a lateral academy; meaning the new officers have previous law enforcement work experience.  A larger academy for recruits without previous police experience is scheduled for Spring 2019.

Acting DOCARE Enforcement Chief Jason Redulla explained, “DOCARE officers have all of the enforcement authority of officers working for county police departments or other law enforcement agencies.  Given the huge volume of natural and cultural resources law and administrative rules they also need to have knowledge about, we felt it was critical to establish specialized training for the men and women who protect our resources.” Their resources enforcement training included the following sections:

History of Conservation Enforcement

Professionalism and Ethics

Forestry & Wildlife Rules and Issues

Policy Review

NOAA Office of Law Enforcement

Arrest and Control

Firearms Training

Conservation & Coastal Lands Rules and Issues

Historic Preservation Rules and Issues

Mammals & Protected Species

Boating & Ocean Recreation Rules and Issues

Hunter Education

Fish Identification

Commercial Fishing Enforcement

Native Hawaiian Law

Small Boat Operation

First Aid and CPR

Environmental Court

Police Media Relations

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Rules and Regulations

The full academy for people without any law enforcement experience will include the specialized conservation enforcement training and recruits will be exposed to the kind of basic training required of all police officers.

DLNR Chair Suzanne Case said, “We are proud and excited to have these six officers join DOCARE’s ranks. We felt there was a critical need for DOCARE to establish its own training academy since conservation officers have to be well versed not only in basic law enforcement but in protection and enforcement of a myriad of environmental and resources law.”

Friday's graduates and their duty assignments:

Kaulana Noa—Oahu

Kaea Sugata—Oahu

Irwin Keliipuleole-Oahu

Brandon McBride—Oahu

Marcus Figgaroa--Maui

Brandon Ignacio—Molokai