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New NRP Leaders Take Oath of Office
Johnson and Hawkins are veteran law enforcement officers
ANNAPOLIS — This morning at the Tawes State Office Building in Annapolis, Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Secretary John R. Griffin administered the oath of office to Colonel George F. Johnson, IV, and Lt. Colonel Alphonso “Hawk” Hawkins, the newly appointed superintendent and deputy superintendent (respectively) of the Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP).
Colonel Johnson, who was appointed NRP superintendent in January, is a 22-year Anne Arundel County Police veteran. Elected Anne Arundel County Sheriff in 1994, Johnson ultimately served three consecutive 4-year terms through 2006. Most recently, he was the 2006 Democratic candidate for Anne Arundel County Executive. Johnson has a degree in criminal justice and is a graduate of the National Sheriff’s Institute and the FBI National Academy.
Lt. Colonel Hawkins, who was named deputy superintendent of the NRP in February, was a well-respected member of the Maryland Park Service for the past nine years, advancing to the rank of assistant superintendent. He is also a 21-year veteran of the Princes Georges County Police Department, reaching the rank of deputy chief in 1997 before coming to the Park Service.
“The NRP superintendent and deputy superintendent are critical leadership positions for public safety and natural resources conservation in Maryland,“ said Secretary Griffin. “George and Hawk each bring a wealth of law enforcement experience to the agency and the O’Malley Administration. I have the utmost respect for both of them, and couldn’t be more pleased to have them as members of DNR’s leadership team.”
Baltimore County - The Maryland Natural Resources Police conducted ATV safety enforcement patrols this past Saturday, April 14, in the Patapsco Valley State Park. This was the first of a series of patrols that will target people illegally operating off-road vehicles on trails in the park. The goal of these patrols is to reduce the number of personal injuries due to reckless and negligent operation of ATVs, and to protect the natural resources in the park from damage caused by ATV use in non-designated areas.
NRP charged three adults and four juveniles for operating ATVs and dirt bikes on the trails of the park around the Halethorpe area in Anne Arundel, Howard and Baltimore Counties. Tyree Leon Back, 29, of Baltimore and Joshua Alan Back, 20, and Grant Thomas Ohler, 19, both of Halethorpe, were issued citations for driving in a non-designated area of a state park.
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources provides trails for off-road vehicles, or ORVs, in Garrett, Potomac, Green Ridge, Savage River and Pocomoke State Forests. Off-road vehicles utilizing these trails must be registered annually with DNR and display a registration sticker. Registration stickers are available from any DNR regional service center, and stickers and trail maps are available at the five state forests where ORV use is permitted. Park visitors are encouraged to call the State Forest and Park Office before using the trails to be advised of current trail closures or hazards.
April 16, 2007
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is the state agency responsible for providing natural and living resource-related services to citizens and visitors. DNR manages more than 446,000 acres of public lands and 18,000 miles of waterways, along with Maryland's forests, fisheries and wildlife for maximum environmental, economic and quality of life benefits. A national leader in land conservation, DNR-managed parks and natural, historic and cultural resources attract 11 million visitors annually. DNR is the lead agency in Maryland's effort to restore the Chesapeake Bay, the state's number one environmental priority. Learn more at www.dnr.maryland.gov