State Police Director To Find Radio Cash

By Jesse Mancini
Staff Writer



The murder of a West Virginia State Police trooper in Ritchie County has prompted the agency's director to find funds for the purchase of portable radio equipment.

State Police Col. Thorn Kirk said he'll find the money from pans of the department's budget to finance the purchase of the portable radio gear that will allow troopers to communicate away from their cars.

"It's a shame we'd have to have anything like that" to persuade legislators to come with the additional funding to buy the gear, Kirk told The Parkersburg News at the closing day of the Legislature in Charleston.

Trooper Larry G. Hacker, 33, Harrisville, was killed when he and another trooper responded to a call of a truck blocking a road at the Ritchie County Community of White Oak. The shooting occurred when Hacker got out of his vehicle and backup was called moments later when deputies from Ritchie County arrived.

Kirk said he'll have to reduce other areas in his budget such as overtime and purchases of new vehicles to finance the radios. The radios, called "rat packs," transmit to the prowl car's radio to relay communications.

The colonel was circling the White Oak area Thursday night in the state police helicopter during the event.

"We we're above them while the firefight was going on," he said. "We had absolutely no communications with them."

Hacker's funeral is 1 p.m. today in the Ritchie County High School gymnasium. He was survived by a wife and two daughters.