Willmar PD receives new radar from state
Peter Cox West Central Tribune
Published Saturday, February 11, 2006

WILLMAR — The Willmar Police Department received a new laser radar for clocking speeders Friday, a gift from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Office of Traffic Safety for their work on the 2005 Safe and Sober Seat Belt Mobilization program.

The gift was given in conjunction with two awards given to Willmar Police Officer Mike Jahnke and Kandiyohi County Sheriff’s Detective Eric Tollefson, both for leading their departments in last year’s May Mobilization on Seat Belts, a statewide effort of seat belt enforcement. The awards were given by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The new radar, or Lidar, as it is known, is more effective than current radars in picking up and staying on single vehicles. It can also give more accurate speeds and distances than old radars.

The Lidar is the second one the Willmar Police Department has received. It is worth nearly $3,000.

Brad Kollman, law enforcement liaison for the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, said “The Willmar Police Department is receiving this Lidar in recognition of their commitment to educating the public and enforcing traffic laws every day.”

Willmar Police Chief Jim Kulset stressed the importance of wearing seat belts.

“It’s impossible to tell exactly how many or whose lives are saved when we emphasize traffic enforcement. … All that we know for sure is that people’s lives are being saved and very likely, they are young and live in our community,” he said.