Fitchburg Police Department

  • Agency: Fitchburg Police Department
  • Address: 5520 Lacy Road, Fitchburg, 53711 WI
  • Chief: Thomas A Blatter (Chief of Police)
Phone: 608-270-4300
Fax: 608-270-4390
Email:

Fitchburg Police Department is located at 5520 Lacy Road, Fitchburg, 53711 WI. The Chief of Police of the department is Thomas A Blatter. The Fitchburg Police Department phone number is 608-270-4300.

Fitchburg Police Department News

Today, following forty years of service to the Fitchburg community, Chief Thomas Blatter welcomed friends, family and co-workers for his final remarks as chief before beginning his retirement. Chief Blatter began his career with the Fitchburg Police Department on May 9th, 1977. Over the years, Chief Blatter rose through ranks serving as an officer, sergeant, lieutenant and deputy chief before being named Chief of Police in 2000. In addition to recognizing Chief Blatter for his forty years of service, Interim Chief Don Bates presented Chief Blatter with the department award for meritorious conduct. Chief Blatter was presented with the award for his dedication to improving both the police department and the City of Fitchburg. During his tenure, Chief Blatter began numerous efforts and programs to create a more efficient delivery of police service and to make community policing a foundation of the department. While in uniform Chief Blatter has seen the department grow from a ten person department (that also provided medical transport) to a modern law enforcement agency, with fifty sworn personnel. Much of the growth, including the many specialty teams such as K9, motorcycle, honor guard and the special events team, is a result of the hard work and leadership of Chief Blatter. Please join us in recognizing and thanking Chief Blatter for his incredible service to our community. Congratulations Chief. Enjoy your retirement!

It's 9 p.m.. Do you know where your keys are? Help us prevent automobile theft. http://www.fitchburgwi.gov/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=973

Week nine of the Citizen's Academy thrust the recruits into full-speed, live scenarios and a video based use of force simulator. With the assistance of the "acting" skills of Lieutenant Brecklin, Sergeant Michels and Sergeant Laha, recruits got a chance to apply what they've learned during the academy during two live scenarios. Recruits experienced how quickly a seemingly basic contact can escalate and how quickly officers must make critical decisions. Following each scenario the recruits were debriefed on their performance, focusing on their decision making and adherence to policy. A video based use of force simulator with interactive laser firearms presented recruits with several scenarios where they were forced to make split-second "shoot or don't shoot" decisions. Scenario night marked the final week of the academy. This week the recruits will gather for a graduation ceremony. All former Citizen's Academy recruits are invited to attend.

Thank you to everyone who helped us "Stuff a Squad" today with donations for the Allied Food Pantry. In addition to the many food donations, one shopper generously donated a crisp $100 bill to benefit the food pantry. If you weren't able to drop off your donations this morning, you can drop off non-perishable food items through the end of the month at the Police Department and City Hall during normal business hours. We would also like to thank our support staff members for their continued hard work (and for braving the elements this morning) on this important annual event. And finally, a special thanks to our community partners at Pick N Save and Hy-Vee for their support.

We are asking for your help to prevent a very preventable crime. Please take a moment to review this information and share it with your friends and neighbors. The Fitchburg Police Department has recently noted an increase in reports of stolen automobiles, as well as an increase in the number of cars listed as stolen in other jurisdictions and recovered in the City of Fitchburg. Automobile theft is almost always a crime of opportunity and is one of the most preventable crimes we investigate. The overwhelming majority of the recent cases we have investigated involve vehicle owners who have either left the vehicle unlocked and running or, more commonly, have left a key in their unlocked car. Recently, many reports of stolen cars often come with nearby reports of thefts of various items from other unlocked cars. In many of these instances it appears the suspect(s) are looking for open cars and then looking through the car for items such as loose change, electronics, credit cards, garage door openers and car keys. Other reports have shown suspects searched for open garage doors in order to find cars with keys inside and other property. We understand in all of our busy lives sometimes even simple steps can be overlooked or forgotten about. However, we cannot emphasize enough these crimes are almost always preventable. Simple measures can save you from the loss of your property and your automobile. Below you will find the most effective steps to prevent your car from being stolen as well as some additional tips should you become the victim of an automobile theft. 1. Lock your car and then lock it again. Visually and physically ensure all of your doors are locked. 2. Check your car to ensure no spare or valet keys or fobs are left inside. Never store keys or fobs in your car. 3. Never leave your car running to warm it up or even for a few seconds to run inside. Use your remote start system or consider having an after-market remote start installed. 4. If possible, park in your garage or a secure parking area. If you park outside, park in a well-lit spot. 5. Do not keep anything of value in your car. This includes loose change, cigarettes, electronics and anything else of value. If you park your car outside, do not leave your garage door opener in your vehicle. For some additional tips visit our website: http://www.fitchburgwi.gov/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=973 We strongly encourage you to make these crime prevention steps a habit. Make locking your doors, both on your car and at your residence, a nightly routine. As always, we encourage you to report suspicious activity to us as soon as possible. We also ask you report all thefts or any other criminal activity as soon as possible. Our non-emergency dispatch can always be reached at (608)270-4300. Thank you for your efforts to prevent crime in our community.

Last week our Citizen's Academy recruits headed to the Madison College range for firearms training. Recruits received instruction on the use of deadly force and firearms safety before having the opportunity to shoot a hand gun. Firearms Instructors Lt. Bomkamp, Sgt. Laha, Sgt. McCarthy, Sgt. Michels and Sgt. Varriale bravely led the recruits through a course of fire, giving them a chance to test their skills. Tonight the recruits get a chance to apply their academy experience as they participate in live action scenarios and a use of force simulator at Madison College.

We need your help! This Saturday we hope to stuff two squads with non-perishable food items to benefit the Allied Food Pantry. Members of our records staff will be on hand at Hy-Vee and at Pick N Save, 3010 Cahill Main from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. to collect donations. Look for our squads parked out front. Some of the most needed items include: • Meals in a can • Canned vegetables • Canned fruit • Rice and pasta • Spaghetti sauce • Soups • Corn muffin mix • Soda crackers If you can't help us stuff our squads on Saturday, but would like to support the Allied Food Pantry, you can also drop off non-perishable food donations to the records window at the Fitchburg Police Department (5520 Lacy Road), Monday-Friday during normal business hours. Once again we've challenged other departments within the City to collect the most donations. Donations will be accepted here until December 1st. Thank you for your support!

We hope you have a safe & happy Halloween. Please use extra caution if you're on the road this evening. Make sure your trick-or-treaters are dressed warmly and have a flashlight and/or reflective tape on their costumes. Better yet, look for officers in the neighborhoods for a free glow stick necklace. Remember official City of Fitchburg trick-or-treat hours are 4-8 p.m..

We're looking forward to seeing you all tomorrow night. We will be handing out glow sticks until they're gone! Official Trick-or-Treat hours for the City of Fitchburg are 4 to 8 p.m.. _________________ Background photo courtesy of the Fitchburg Star

Earlier this month, Officer Lisa Heitman graduated from the Blackhawk Technical College Law Enforcement Basic Recruit Academy. In addition to completing the 720 hour academy, Officer Heitman also received the Academic Achievement Award and the Class Leadership Award. Officer Heitman has begun her field-training process and is currently assigned to our night shift. Please join us in congratulating and welcoming Officer Heitman. Officer Heitman is pictured here with Chief Blatter and Deputy Chief Bates at graduation.

Whether you're ready to accept it or not, Christmas is less than 60 days away and that means we are getting ready to help local families during Shop with a Cop. Shop with a Cop - Dane County, Inc. pairs children from economically disadvantaged families with law enforcement officers from area agencies in an effort to create positive relationships in the community. Officers and children spend the day together, shopping for gifts for the children's families and then wrapping them during a dinner party. The Shop with a Cop program is completely reliant on donations. Join officers next Saturday for the Shop with a Cop Spaghetti Fundraiser at the VFW Post on Lakeside Drive and help support this great program. http://www.shopwithacopdanecounty.org

Last week our Citizen's Academy recruits got a chance to get physical during Defensive and Arrest Tactics (DAAT). Sergeant Michels, Sergeant Laha and Officer Dretske provided insight on the law and policies related to the use of force before the class headed to the DAAT room. Recruits got a chance to practice defensive techniques and handcuffing before ending the night by firing a Taser at Sgt. Michels (don't worry they were inert cartridges and he was dressed in the fashionable Taser training suit). Tonight the recruits head to the range for firearms training.

Official Trick-or-Treat hours for the City of Fitchburg are 4-8 p.m. on Tuesday, October 31st. Extra officers will be on patrol in the neighborhoods for safety and, as always, they will have a supply of glow sticks on hand for trick-or-treaters young & old. If you're looking for some Halloween fun this weekend, our friends at the Fitchburg Public Library are hosting their 10th Annual Halloween Hunt: http://www.fitchburgwi.gov/Calendar.aspx?EID=5624 ___________________ Background photo courtesy of the Fitchburg Star

Last night Deputy Chief Bates and Lieutenant Brecklin were joined by a few of our Spanish speaking officers, including Officer Frias, Officer Hinojos and Officer Miller, at a community forum held at Leopold Elementary School. Residents were invited to come meet with officers, ask questions and share their experiences with local law enforcement. The forum was a result of an ongoing partnership with the United Way Law Enforcement and Leaders of Color Collaborative/Immigration and Refugee Task Force, Centro Hispano, La Movida Madison, Joining Forces for Families and the Madison Police Department. Fitchburg officers were joined by Officer Chvala from the Madison Police Department, Fitchburg Mayor Jason Gonzalez, and representatives from Joining Forces for Families and the Dane County District Attorney's Office Victim Services Crime Response Program. Thank you to everyone who took time out of their schedules to join us for this event. We would also like to thank everyone involved for the invitation and for making the event possible.

No matter what's on the menu, we always enjoy the opportunity to serve lunch with our friends at Stoner Prairie Elementary (fortunately they have yet to test our Sloppy Joe scooping skills). Today, Lt. Brecklin, Officer Jacobson and Officer Thain served some pizza and had a chance to talk with students. Thanks to the staff at Stoner Prairie for the invite and the photos.

Please join us Tuesday, October 24th, for a community engagement session at Leopold Elementary School. Members of the Madison Police Department will join us for this session to connect with community members and answer questions. This is event is presented by the Law Enforcement and Leaders of Color Collaborative/Immigration and Refugee Task Force and Centro Hispano in partnership with La Movida Madison.

Last week our Citizen's Academy class traveled to Madison College with members of Special Events Team to learn how officers respond to active shooter situations and how officers safely clear buildings that may contain dangerous suspects. Sergeant Marthe, Officer Trundle, Officer Gonzalez, Officer Parker and K9 Drago provided hands on instruction in building clearing tactics. After several rounds of practice, the class participated in a training scenario involving an active shooter using blank gunfire. K9 Drago also demonstrated an apprehension, biting the suspect, played by Officer Trundle. Recruits learned how to assist the K9 team to safely take a suspect into custody. The evening gave recruits a very realistic look at training officers hope they never have to use in the field. This week the recruits will get plenty of hands on experience during Defensive and Arrest Tactics training.

Despite the gloomy weather, Officer Parker and K9 Drago joined hundreds of walkers at McKee Farms Park this morning for the Madison Area Down Syndrome Society's 2017 Buddy Walk. Drago enjoyed making a bunch of new friends, including this group from Team Thomas. 2017 marks the 17th year of the Buddy Walk which aims to celebrate the strength of the Down syndrome community in south central Wisconsin while raising awareness and funds. One of Drago's primary, and perhaps his most enjoyed, functions is community relations. He truly considers the community a part of his pack and enjoys every opportunity to interact with members young and old. His friendly personality and approachability allow us, as a department, to build relationships with community members who may not otherwise start a conversation with us. We cannot thank you all enough for your support to bring Drago to our community. If you have an event or group that would like to meet Drago (and Officer Parker), please contact us! Thank you to our friends at the Madison Area Down Syndrome Society for the invitation.

Over the last 24 hours we have responded to several property related crimes, including burglaries and thefts from automobiles, in residential neighborhoods near the area of McKee Road, between Osmundsen Road and Chapel Valley Road. Unlocked garages, vehicles and an unlocked home were entered and items including spare keys and garage door openers were taken. All of these incidents appear to have occurred during the overnight hours of October 12th. Property crimes are the most prevalent as well as the most preventable crimes we respond to. The investigation into these particular property crimes is continuing, however we are asking you, our number one partner in crime prevention, to take some basic steps and share this information with your neighbors. •If a door has a lock, use it. This includes the door from your garage to your residence. Keep exterior doors locked even when you are home. •Leave your exterior home lights on and/or utilize motion detecting lights. •Whether they are in your car, garage or house, don't keep valuables in plain sight. This includes your garage door opener. •Do not keep valuables in your car. This includes your garage door opener and any spare keys. We have also investigated several recent motor vehicle thefts in which spare keys were left in a glove box or center console. Keep track of your spare keys and ensure they are kept in a safe location. •Keep your garage door closed at all times. This is the number one way to reduce most of the property crime we encounter. •Report suspicious activity and all criminal activity immediately. When we investigate property crime we often learn of neighbors who may have had a vehicle or garage gone through but did not report it. Whether it's a criminal or suspicious activity, please report it. While we may not always be able to "solve" the crime or recover property, it is important for us to understand what is occurring in order to identify patterns and potentially suspects. We also recommend incorporating these tips into a nightly routine. In many of these incidents, unlocked doors or garage doors left open are an oversight. Checking doors and making sure lights are on every night at the same time can help eliminate those instances. Our non-emergency dispatch number, (608)270-4300 is staffed by a City of Fitchburg dispatcher 24 hours a day. If in doubt about suspicious activity or you wish to make a report, please call us. Please share these tips with your neighbors. While you may practice these crime prevention techniques, a neighbor who does not may be unknowingly welcoming criminals into your neighborhood. Don't know your neighbors? Go introduce yourself. Neighbors who know each other and their neighbor's routines are more likely to notice and report suspicious activity. Thank you for partnering with us to prevent crime in our community.

Week five of the Citizen's Academy found the recruits at Madison International Speedway. Sergeant Johnston, Officer Buri and Officer Rettler provided instruction on Emergency Vehicle Operation and Control (E.V.O.C.). The recruits got a chance to drive the same course and maneuvers taught in the police academy, getting a chance to test their driving and decision making skills. Fortunately, not too many traffic cones were harmed in the process. While at the track the recruits also learned about vehicle pursuits and got a chance to put their training from vehicle contacts to the test at the conclusion of a pursuit. This week the class will receive an opportunity to learn about building clearing tactics and responding to active shooter situations.

Information on this evening's Fitchburg Common Council Meeting: The City respects everyone’s right to voice their opinion in a respectful manner and in an effort to ensure the safety of all, offers the attached/shared information.

Last week, at the Wisconsin Law Enforcement Canine Handler Association Annual Conference & Awards Ceremony, Officer John Parker and K9 Drago received two awards - "Rookie Handler of the Year" and "Meritorious Narcotics Find of the Year". In addition to being a great honor, these awards are also evidence of the tireless work of Officer Parker as well the skill of K9 Drago. •"Meritorious Narcotics Find of the Year" - Officer Parker and Drago were nominated for this award after locating a "baseball" size amount of narcotics this summer. The duo was asked to assist a local agency following a pursuit. After ensuring there were no other suspects in the vehicle, Drago was instructed to search for items that may have been thrown from the vehicle before the suspects were caught. In a marshy area, approximately 40 feet from the car, in grass several feet tall and in the middle of the night, Drago almost immediately alerted on the bag of drugs tossed from the car. Locating these drugs kept them off of the street and led to felony charges for one of the passengers. •"Rookie Handler of the Year" - Officer Parker was nominated for this award for his commitment to the success of the K9 program and the hard work he continues to put in with K9 Drago. Officer Parker developed a mission statement for the team and dedicated a great deal of time in researching K9 vendors to ensure the new K9 would be a proper fit for our mission and community. In the spring, Officer Parker spent six weeks training with Drago at Shallow Creek Kennels - Premier Police Service Dogs in Pennsylvania. Upon their return from Shallow Creek in May, the pair immediately went to work. Since beginning their patrol career together Officer Parker and K9 Drago have already had a measurable impact on our community. They have taken guns and drugs off of the street, kept officers safe, located evidence and most importantly have begun their career as unofficial "ambassadors" of our department. If you've had the pleasure of seeing K9 Drago at one of the many events he's attended, you know he loves to meet new people young and old. These awards would not be possible without the unwavering support of you, the community we serve. Countless individuals have made important donations large and small and multiple businesses have stepped up, whether through donations or in-kind support, to ensure the efforts of our K9 Unit are successful and impactful. Thank you all for your support. Please join us in congratulating Officer Parker and K9 Drago. Officer Parker is pictured here along with Deputy Chief Bates at last weeks W.L.E.C.H.A. Awards Ceremony in Oshkosh.

We would like to thank our friends at Badger Sporting Goods for supporting Drago and our K9 fundraising efforts. There's still time to get your official Fitchburg Police K9 Unit Merchandise. Sweatshirts, t-shirts and long sleeve t-shirts in adult and youth sizes are still available. Stop by Badger Sporting Goods on Bryant Road (just off of Fish Hatchery Road) Friday or Saturday to pick up some gear and support Drago. Visit www.bsgsports.com for their hours.