Wheeling’s Top Cop Trains at State Academy

WHEELING – Wheeling Police Chief Shawn Schwertfeger is brushing up on his defensive tactics and learning West Virginia case law during a three-week training session at the West Virginia State Police Academy.

Before taking the helm in June, Schwertfeger had been working in Virginia. And while taking the course was not required, Schwertfeger wanted to take the classes and learn more about West Virginia’s laws.

”It’s an abbreviated course that includes defense tactics, driving and case law in West Virginia,” he said, noting he has two weeks remaining.

The defense tactics include training in knife and ground fighting. The courses are designed for those who already have been working in law enforcement but are coming to West Virginia from other states.

He’s enjoyed the training to date, though he admits some of the physical coursework has left his muscles a little sore the next morning.

”I’m not a young guy anymore,” the 46-year-old quipped. ”I also did some physical fitness with the younger students.”

A Moundsville native, Schwertfeger had been working as captain of the Albemarle County, Va., Police Department Operations Bureau before coming to Wheeling. He graduated from John Marshall High School in 1984, West Liberty State College in 1989 and the FBI National Academy in 2009.