By Major Jerry Bell
On Friday, Apr. 30, a retirement ceremony was held at the DeQuincy Police Department for Captain Tom Threet who served as a Police Officer for nearly 30 years in our local community. Those attending were members of Captain Threet’s family, Mayor Riley Smith, and members of the DeQuincy Police Dept.
Also attending were the four Chiefs of Police that Threet worked for in his lengthy career. They were in order, Chief Jerry Bell, Chief Mike Suchanek, Chief Roy Williams, and our current Chief Casey Whitehead.
Threet started as a volunteer fireman with Ward Six and Civil Defense. Then he went on to the Sheriff’s Reserve and started working as a deputy at the Airport. He started working part-time at the DQPD and then went full time in 1994. He went to the Academy in 1995 and won second place in the firearms training. He went on to become DQPD’s first POST firearms Instructor, first Chemical Weapons instructor, Taser instructor, DARE instructor, and the Hunter’s Safety instructor.
He held many duties as a police officer He was an outstanding patrol officer. He was a part-time member of then District Attorney Rick Bryant’s Violent Task Force which handled homicides and conducted investigations in numerous parishes. DA Bryant sent him to 23 of the best investigative schools. Threet worked cases and apprehended murderers, rapists, and numerous felons that committed all types of crimes. He was responsible for keeping DeQuincy safe for many years.
Perhaps his greatest case was the capture of a person that raped one of DeQuincy’s beloved senior citizens. He went on to testify and help the DA’s office conduct a successful prosecution of that terrible incident.
Threet was the PD’s Firearms Instructor and was responsible for making sure that our officers were highly trained and proficient in their use. Also, he was responsible in helping thousands of our citizens statewide in obtaining their concealed weapons permit.
If you ever attended his classes, you knew that he was serious in making sure that safety was paramount. People from all over the parish would come to attend. Threet would teach numerous classes and then donate all the proceeds to certain charities thus donating his time and resources to help so many people. His classes helped pay for the building of our firearms’ range.
He is well known by thousands of our children as being the DARE instructor at the DeQuincy Schools. He taught so many children about illegal drugs. He was our Santa Claus at the Christmas parades. He made a great Santa Claus and loved playing that role.
Threet served his country as a Marine during his early years in defense of our nation. This was a great foundation for him to mold his life afterwards. During his lifetime career as an officer, he made an impact on those around him and most considered him a hero. He saved numerous lives during his tenure as a first responder.
He was awarded a Lifesaving and Bravery award for saving a grandchild and grandmother by going into a burning apartment twice to get them both out. He used his training that he received at Ward Six Fire Dt. He was injured and hospitalized for several days with smoke inhalation. He also received three more Lifesaving awards in bringing three people back to life using CPR.
Some more of the awards that he received are the Citizen of the Year award from the Chamber of Commerce, VFW Officer of the Year, Housing Authority Officer of the Year which was given to him at the annual Law Enforcement Officer of the year by the Louisiana Bar Association.