Valparaiso University Police Department

  • Agency: Valparaiso University Police Department
  • Address: 813 LaPorte Ave., Valparaiso, 46383-4523 IN
  • Chief:
Phone: 219-464-5430
Fax: 219-464-5197
Email:

Valparaiso University Police Department is located at 813 LaPorte Ave., Valparaiso, 46383-4523 IN. The Valparaiso University Police Department phone number is 219-464-5430.

Valparaiso University Police Department News

Junior Police Academy The Valparaiso Police Department is seeking high school students that represent good citizenship and have an interest in a law enforcement career. The Department is again sponsoring the Junior Police Academy in 2019. The academy consists of two classes per week, starting February 18, 2019 through May 1, 2019 and are scheduled for 2-3 hours, per topic presented. The course is designed for high school students to meet officers and learn about the daily activities of police work. The topics presented include: traffic enforcement, crash investigation, crimes against young people, drug investigation, physical tactics, K9, SWAT, and various education topics geared toward our youth community. The class further allows for an opportunity for the students to partake in a field day, where they can show their learned skills in a variety of mock police related activities. Space is limited to attend the program, with applications available at the Valparaiso Police Department (355 Washington St.). All applications must be completed, accompanying a one-page essay as to why the student wishes to participate in the JPA, along with a parent signature, and returned to the Valparaiso Police Department by January 15, 2019. Please contact Ptrl. Pat Yokovich, coordinator and instructor of the JPA, at 219-462-2135 or pyokovich@valpopd.com with any questions. Additional information available at http://www.facebook.com/ValparaisoJuniorPoliceAcademy

Det. Hamilton, Lt. Patston, Ptrl. LaMotte, and VFD Firefighter Nick Fanelli present the colors for the Veterans Day observance held at The Service Memorial at Foundation Meadows Park on November 9, 2018.

~ Community Alert ~ Valparaiso Police Investigating Incidents of Theft from Vehicles and Two Motor Vehicle Thefts Valparaiso Police are currently investigating two incidents of motor vehicle theft and two theft from vehicle reports which occurred overnight on November 5, 2018. Each incident of theft was discovered after 5:00 a.m. and involved vehicles that were unsecured. The thefts occurred in the 2250 block of St. Joseph Ln. and the 450 block of Ridgeland Ave. Police strongly encourage vehicle owners to lock their vehicles when left unattended. Additionally, removing valuable items or placing them where they are not visible will assist with minimizing your losses. Police are requesting assistance regarding the thefts. Anybody with information is asked to call the police department at (219) 462-2135 or text a tip to TIP411 (847-411) and enter “Valpo” as the first word in your message field prior to sending the tip.

Valparaiso Police Participated in DEA Drug Take Back Initiative On October 27, 2018 the Valparaiso Police Department participated in the DEA Drug Take Back Program. In 2018, the drop box has received approximately 1000 pounds of medication. The department began its participation in the program, which is maintained by Det. Sgt. Dave Castellanos, in 2010. Since that time, we have “taken back” approximately 8234 pounds of medication. The drop box is available in the lobby of the Valparaiso Police Department 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Three Arrested on Drug Charges at Two Locations On October 30, 2018, Valparaiso Police were advised of a narcotic complaint at 353 Locust St. The report indicated the odor of “marijuana” was coming from an apartment at this location. Upon arrival, Sgt. T. Kobitz utilized his K9, Geist, to confirm the odor was emitting from Apartment 5. A search warrant was obtained and executed on the residence. A search of the apartment resulted in the seizure of the following: 277 grams of marijuana, multiple illegal prescription drugs, Methamphetamine, Fentanyl and numerous liquid vape tubes containing THC. John Judd, 35, of Valparaiso was arrested on charges of possession of a hypodermic needle, maintaining a common nuisance, and possession of paraphernalia. Judd was held at the Porter County Jail on these charges. Charges are still being investigated on other subjects linked to the address. While investigating this complaint, Valparaiso Police received information on a possible suspect located at 505 Yellowstone Rd. Upon arrival to the address, police were allowed inside and observed narcotic related items in plain view. A search of the property was consented to and completed by officers. The search resulted in the seizure of marijuana and narcotic paraphernalia, including two hypodermic needles, being located. Terra Lynch, 33, of Valparaiso was arrested on charges of possession of marijuana, possession of a hypodermic needle, possession of paraphernalia, possession of a narcotic drug and visiting a common nuisance. Jeremiah Cruz, 31, was arrested on charges of possession of a hypodermic needle, possession of a narcotic drug, and visiting a common nuisance. Both were held at the Porter County Jail on these charges.

Police Seeking Identification of Subject Valparaiso Police are investigating an incident where an unknown male used the credits card of another, after having removed her property while in a local business. The incidents occurred at Michael’ Department Store, Target, and Best Buy in Valparaiso on October 22, 2018 at approximately 5:00 p.m. Police are seeking the identity of the male subject in the provided photos. If you have information regarding this person in the photo posted, please contact Detective Jason Hamilton at 219-462-2135. Information can also be texted to TIP411 (847-411) and enter “Valpo” in the message field prior to sending the message

Police Seeking Identification of Subject Valparaiso Police are investigating an incident where an unknown male entered Wal-Mart (2400 Morthland Dr.) and removed items of merchandise without paying. The incident occurred on October 29, 2018 at approximately 6:30 a.m. Police are seeking the identity of the male subject in the provided photo. If you have information regarding the person in the photo, please contact Detective Brian Thurman at 219-462-2135. Information can also be texted to TIP411 (847-411) and enter “Valpo” in the message field prior to sending the message

Sgt. Joe Hall New Public Information Officer The Valparaiso Police Department would like to announce the lateral transfer of Sgt. Joe Hall to the position of Commander of Support Services. Sgt. Hall will assume all responsibilities of retiring officer Sgt. Grennes. This includes the duties of Public Information Officer for the department. Sgt. Hall is a 12-year veteran of the department. During his years in the Patrol Division he was a field training officer, K9 officer, training instructor and hostage negotiator. Joe’s new duties will include Coordinator of all Community Programs, CALEA Manager, Records Department Supervisor and Public Information Officer. Sgt. Hall’s new duties will begin immediately. Congratulations Sgt. Hall!

Halloween Safety Alert Happy Halloween from the Valparaiso Police Department! Please enjoy trick or treat in Valparaiso on Halloween night, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Be safe and follow these tips while enjoying the holiday: • Walk, do not run from house to house • Stay on sidewalks • Stop and look both ways before crossing the street • Cross the street at intersections, not between cars • Carry a flashlight and wear bright clothing • Make sure costumes do not drag on the ground • Avoid wearing masks when walking house to house • Approach only houses that have lights on • Wear clothing with reflective markings or tape • Wear costumes that do not restrict your sight • Wait to eat any candy until get home • Carry a cellphone to report any suspicious activity

Officer Retirement Announcement The Valparaiso Police Department is announcing the retirement of Public Information Officer, Sergeant Michael Grennes. Sgt. Grennes has been with the department for 25 years and the department’s Public Information Officer for nearly 20 years. He was also the department’s CALEA Accreditation Manager and coordinated the department’s community relations programs. Mike has accepted a position with the MSD of Boone Twp. School Corporation (Hebron Schools) as Director of School Security and Safety. His last day with the department will be Wednesday October 31st.

Police Seeking Identification of Subjects Valparaiso Police are investigating an incident where two subjects entered Wal-Mart (2400 Morthland Dr.) and removed several items of merchandise without paying. This incident occurred on October 22, 2018 at approximately 1:30 a.m. Police are seeking the identities of both subjects in the provided photos. If you have information regarding the persons in the photos posted, please contact Detective Jason Hamilton at 219-462-2135. Information can also be texted to TIP411 (847-411) and enter “Valpo” in the message field prior to sending the message.

Fatal Motorcycle Crash on U.S. HWY 30 Valparaiso Police responded to the report of a motorcycle crash in the 800 block of U.S. HWY 30 at approximately 10:30 p.m. on Monday, in which the motorcycle had struck a deer. Upon arrival, officer located a male subject in the roadway unresponsive. Valparaiso Fire/EMS arrived on scene and determined the motorcyclist was deceased. Police were advised by witnesses the motorcycle was eastbound on U.S. HWY 30, just east of Sager Rd., when the motorcyclist struck a deer. Police continue to investigate the crash.

Two Juveniles Arrested for Burglary and Arson at Valplayso On October 20, 2018, at 3:20 p.m., Valparaiso Police responded to Valplayso, 1448 Glendale Blvd., to assist the Valparaiso Fire Department for the report of a small fire to the shelter. Officer Michelle Kodicek arrived on scene and began to investigate. She located a damaged rear door to the shelter, which had been forced open, and a burning plastic beverage receptacle inside. Valparaiso Fire arrived on scene and extinguished the fire with an estimated $950 damage to equipment inside the building. There was no apparent structural damage to the shelter. While still investigating on scene, Officer Kodicek located two male juvenile subjects who had been seen walking away from the shelter when officers arrived. Shoe prints located on the rear door were consistent with the treads on the shoes of the juveniles. Officer Kodicek conducted interviews with the juveniles and their parents, with each juvenile admitting responsibility for the damages. The Valparaiso juveniles, 11 and 12 years of age, were both held on charges of Arson, Burglary, and Criminal Mischief at the Porter County Juvenile Detention Center.

Male Struck in Roadway on State Road 49 - Updated 10-22-2018 Valparaiso Police responded to the area, of State Road 49 and LaPorte Ave. at approximately 1:22 a.m. for a vehicle crash involving a pedestrian. Upon officer’s arrival, they learned a male subject was lying in the roadway on State Road 49 when struck by a tractor trailer. The tractor trailer was traveling northbound on State Road 49. The male was transported to Porter Regional Hospital and later air lifted to a South Bend Hospital for further treatment. The crash remains under investigation; however, police do not currently believe drugs or alcohol are a factor regarding the driver of the tractor trailer. Police have now identified the individual as a 16- year old male from Illinois. The male was reported to have walked away from the Valparaiso Hampton Inn, where he had been staying with his parents. Police continue to investigate the crash.

Police Seeking Identification of Subject Valparaiso Police are investigating an incident when an individual enter the CVS Pharmacy at 3400 Calumet and presented a fraudulent prescription. This occurred on Thursday October 11th at approximate 1pm. A fraudulent identification was also used to purchase the medication. Police are seeking the identification of the male subject. If you have information regarding the person in the photo posted below please contact Detective Sgt. Sheets at (219) 462-2135. Information can also be texted to TIP411 (847-411) and enter "Valpo" in the message field prior to sending the tip.

Juvenile Arrested after Making Threat to VHS On Thursday afternoon Valparaiso Police were notified of a potential threat to Valparaiso High School and opened an investigation. The threat was made online and police immediately identified the juvenile subject. The juvenile subject, who is not a Valparaiso Community School student was arrested and charged with intimidation. The subject was detained at the Porter County Juvenile Detention Center. Police continue to investigate the incident.

Vote for K9 Officer Sobierajski and Vega K9 Officer Ryan Sobierajski and his K9 partner Vega are finalist in the Vested Interest in K9s Chevy Tahoe contest. Vested Interest in K9s, an organization that provides protective vests for police K9s throughout the country has initiated a contest for one K9 Officer to be awarded a new Chevy Tahoe. The K9 Officer that receives the most votes will be awarded a new Chevy Tahoe sport utility. You can vote for Officer Sobierajski and K9 Vega by logging onto the Vested Interest website or click on the link: www.vik9s.org/suvgiveaway/. Once on the site click on “Entrant Galley Vote Now”. Enter your email to vote. The contest begins today and concludes on October 31st.

Valparaiso Police Identify Subject Driving Blue Van Police Cancel Community Alert for Blue Van On Tuesday afternoon Valparaiso Police alerted the community to a suspicious incident that had occurred at the Montessori School located at 505 Marquette St. Police were investigating the report of an elderly male driving a blue van with Texas plates who had approached an individual picking up a child and asked about the pick-up procedures for the Montessori School. Police had issued a community alert on the incident. On Wednesday, the male subject contacted police after reading the community alert in the local paper. He immediately realized the alert was him and wanted to identify himself to police. Police met with the subject and learned that he was at a nearby business and observed the long line of vehicles picking up students. He explained being curious of the procedures. Police have concluded their investigation regarding this incident. Although nothing came of this incident, this is exactly the type of suspicious incident that should be reported. Police would like to thank the individual who reported the incident and encourage others to report suspicious incidents if they are observed.

Culvers of Valparaiso Present Check to K9 Program This morning Culvers of Valparaiso presented a check from a recent fundrasier to the Valparaiso Police Department's K9 program. The fundraiser earned over $1700 for the K9 program. A huge thank you to Culvers for their support of the Valparaiso Police Department.

Police Seeking Identity of Subject The Valparaiso Police are investigating an incident from Monday September 24th when a male subject passed a counterfeit $100 bill. The male subject entered the Speedway gas station at US 30 and State Road 2 and presented the counterfeit $100 bill to the clerk. Anybody that can identify the subject is asked to call the Valparaiso Police Department at 462-2135 (Detective Hamilton) or text a tip to TIP411 (847-411) and enter keyword "Valpo" in the message field box before sending typing and sending your tip.

Police Investigating Suspicious Incident at Day Care Center Valparaiso Police are investigating a suspicious incident that occurred outside Montessori School (daycare center) at 505 Marquette St. On Monday afternoon (2:45 p.m.) police were called to the location after a male subject approached a grandparent of a child and inquired about the procedures for picking up a child at the center. The subject drove off a short time later without picking up any students. The male subject was driving a blue minivan with possible Texas license plates. The male subject was described as an older subject, approximately 70 years old. He had gray hair and was wearing glasses with a baseball cap. Police are investigating the incident and have increased patrols in the area.

High School Threat Made on School’s Social Media Site Valparaiso Police were notified by Valparaiso High School officials of a threat that was posted on one of the school’s social media sites. Police immediately began to investigate. The student was identified, and he confirmed posting the threat, which was to “shoot up the school”. The student was detained and removed from the school by police. Charges of Intimidation are pending on the student. The student will also face disciplinary actions by school officials. Police continue to investigate, and at this time, do not believe the threat to be a creditable one. Police increased their presence in and around the school just as an added pre-caution.

Bicyclist Struck and Killed on Hwy 130 Valparaiso Police are investigating a crash that occurred this morning (approximately 9:30 a.m. Sunday) on Hwy 130 near Clifford Rd. A vehicle traveling EB on Hwy 130 struck a bicyclist also EB on Hwy 130. The bicyclist was killed at the scene. Police continue to investigate the crash. Highway 130 was closed while police investigated the crash. Alcohol is not believed to be a factor in the crash.

Valparaiso Police Continue to Investigate School Threat On Thursday September 6th the Valparaiso Police Department received information from Valparaiso High School Officials of a potential school shooting at Valparaiso High School. Information received included a potential date for the threat as Friday September 14th. Police immediately began investigating the threat and learned the identification of both juveniles, neither are attending Valparaiso Community Schools. Police continue to investigate and have been in full communication with Valparaiso School Administrators and the Porter County Prosecutor’s Office throughout their investigation. Police, as a result, of their investigation are confident the threat has been eliminated. Police and school officials are confident that Valparaiso High School is safe for classes on Friday September 14th.However, as an added assurance, Valparaiso Police will have numerous officers in and around the school on Friday. Police continue to investigate this incident.

Applications Being Accepted for Upcoming Testing Process The Valparaiso Police Department is accepting applications for individuals seeking a career in law enforcement. The department will be testing individuals from these applications and from applications on file. Full application packets are available at the Valparaiso Police Department, located at, 355 S. Washington St. A complete application packet can also be downloaded from the department’s website at www.valparaisopolice.org and returned to the department by mail. The minimum requirements needed to apply are: must be 21yrs of age or older; hold a high school degree or GED; be a United States Citizen; posses a valid driver’s license and have no prior felony arrests. For more information about the position including a job description, log onto; www.valparaisopolice.org and click on employment opportunities. All applications must be completed and returned to the department by Friday September 21st at 4:00 p.m. To be considered for the upcoming testing process. Please no telephone inquiries. The City of Valparaiso and the Valparaiso Police Department are Equal Opportunity Employers.