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   Chapter on Watertown Police Department


Watertown Auxiliary Police

Established in 1942


City Has Oldest Police Reserve Group


1942      Watertown Police Reserve [Watertown Auxiliary Police]

06 28          Watertown has the oldest police auxiliary group in the state.  The Watertown Police Reserve, originally known as the Watertown Auxiliary Police group, has been ongoing consecutively from 1942.  The Milwaukee Police Auxiliary is the next oldest organization, having been formed after World War II.  The American Legion was founded in 1919 and since there was no group to give the veterans of World War I military honors, a firing squad was started to provide the duty.  The squad was composed of members that could easily get away from work for funerals.


The Watertown Auxiliary Police force, not to be confused with the Watertown Special Police, was formed in 1942 as a Civil Defense Corps during World War II under the direction of a County Defense Chairman.  The primary function of the organization at that time was to assist residents in the event of an attack by a foreign country. 


Upon conclusion of World War II, then Police Chief Theodore Voigt asked the group to become an Auxiliary Police squadron.  The group became the Watertown Auxiliary Police and have been assisting sworn officers at special events and major incidents demanding prolonged law enforcement services ever since.  They helped in Watertown and also went to other cities when special help was needed.


After World War II, a county U.S. Civil Defense Corps of the Office of Defense was formed.  Twenty-five members of the Legion firing squad was the nucleus of the corps.  The training session included a 40 hour first aid course conducted by regular physicians with the help of several brothers of Sacred Heart Academy.  It was an extensive course including knowledge of the name and function of every bone in the body..


Defense Chairman Don Smith awarded certificates for completing the course and the group was known as auxiliary police.  They were given authority and designated as special deputies by the sheriff.  They were to work in any place in Jefferson County, not just in Watertown.  Their uniform was a badge and a white helmet.  Blackouts were the main function of the group.




Bill Connor joined the Watertown Auxiliary Police force in 1957, serving 52 years, the last 30 as captain.  Then Chief Charles McGee presented Bill with the Watertown Police Department Exemplary Service Award for 50 years of selfless and dedicated service to the citizens of Watertown and the Watertown Police Department, and on retirement received a plaque at Riverfest from Chief Tim Roets on Aug. 9, 2009.



Picture taken Sept. 04, 1960.  Police Department Photo


Members of the Watertown Auxiliary Police who were on duty at Riverside Park during the Labor Day celebration, lined up for the first picture ever taken of the group, near the park bandshell. 


Back, left to right:  Sam Friedman, Paul Gehrke, Everett Talladge, Angelo Torres, Rosco Conklin, Joseph Swartz, Frank Sazama, Melvin Lange, Lester Else and Chief of Police Herbert F. Vehlow.


Front, left to right:  Thomas Armstrong, William Conner, Donald Lenius, James Loukota, Wallace Fischer, Max Noffz, Herman Gerth, Henry Schaller, C. A. Wallman.



01 26       First women to join Police Reserve

   Caroline Fischer (Wallace) and Barbara Locke (William) were the first women to join the Watertown Police Reserve, undergoing a six month period of training, including weapons training.  Pictured with Chief Donovan



08 04          15 members of the Watertown Police Auxiliary

   Police Reserve in need of new members.

WHS_005_WPD_037   Pictured are (back row, left): Don Kurtz, Melvin Lange, Tom Schwefel, Matt Miller, Mark Miller, Steve Sukow and Daniel Voigt. Front row (from left): Doug Clemmans, Sgt. Tom Ebert, Captain William Connor, Lt. Cliff Schuett, Stan Sukow and Dan Adams. Not pictured are Jerry Post and Delano Wegner.


Currently, the Watertown Police Reserve has 15 members, who are certified in Red Cross CPR and first aid.  They provide service for parades, functions at Riverside Park and Turner Hall, and evenings at the outdoor pool.


They also handle events at Watertown High School and Riverside Junior High, as well as health fairs and other events.  The group holds monthly meetings and training sessions.  It is under the direction of Police Chief Richard Reynolds and liaison officer Inspector Larry Sukow.


The group's origins stem from post World War I days, when a firing squad was formed to give the veterans of the war proper honors.  It was originally comprised of men who could easily get away from their work to attend funerals for the war dead.


During World War II, a county civil defense corps of the Office of Defense was formed, with 25 members of the legion firing squad forming the nucleus.  Defense Chairman Don Smith awarded certificates to all those completing an extensive training course, and the group was known as the auxiliary police.


At the end of the war, Watertown Police Chief Voigt asked the group to become an auxiliary police squadron, and they were named the Watertown Auxiliary Police.



04 17          12 members of the Watertown Police Auxiliary


Watertown Auxiliary Police members in 1997 were (from left) Secretary Susan Jarmillo, Don Kurtz, Vice President David Evans, Dan Zindars, President Doug Clemmons, James Leslie, Louise Schlender, Kristine Schuett, Rebecca Freson, and Captain William Connor. Kurtz and Leslie are on the board of directors. Not pictured are Aaron David and Gary Lehman.


Currently, the Watertown Auxiliary Police has 12 members, who provide service for parades and functions at Riverside Park and Turner Hall. They also are present for events including football, wrestling, baseball, basket-ball, track, volleyball and dances at Watertown High School and Riverside Middle School. They assist at other events as well, such as health fairs and expos.


The group meets once each month for a meeting and training session. All members are certified in Red Cross cardiopulmonary resuscitation and first aid.


At the present time, the group is under the direction of Watertown Police Chief Charles McGee.  The liaison officer is Inspector Larry Sukow.


William Connor serves as captain of the auxiliary.  He has 40 years of service, the longest of any current member.


Other members include Don Kurtz, 30 years; Doug Clemmons, 17 years; James Leslie, six years; Gary Lehman, three years; Aaron David, two years; Susan Jaramillo, two years; David Evans, two years; Rebecca Freson, one year; Louise Schlender, 10 months; Dan Zindars, six months; and Kristine Schuett, two months.



   Plaque presented to Capt. Bill Connor

In appreciation for 40 years of dedicated service to the Watertown Auxiliary Police, 1957-1997



06 28          12 members of the Watertown Police Auxiliary


Back row [l-r], Dan Zindars, Aaron Albrecht, Ryan Peterson, Matthew Petrie and Tim Steinbach.

Front row [l-r], Doug Clemmons, Justin Berth, Mary Connor, Theresa Kluewer, Don Kurtz and Bill Connor.  Not pictured is Mary Sell.


The Watertown Auxiliary Police provides service for parades, functions at Riverside Park, Turner Hall, Watertown High School, Riverside Middle School functions such as football, wrestling, baseball, basket-ball, track and dances.  They also work for such events as health fairs and expositions.


The group meets once a month for a meeting and training session.


The group is under the direction of Police Chief Charles McGee and liaison officer Sgt. Leon Ruder. William Connor serves as captain.


Officers of the group are President Dan Zindars, Vice President Ryan Peterson, Secretary/Treasurer Mary Connor, and trustees Doug Clemmons and Don Kurtz.


Members include, Capt. Bill Connor, 43 years; Don Kurtz, 33 years; Doug Clemmons, 19 years; Dan Zindars, three years; Mary Connor, three years; Theresa Kluewer, two years; Ryan Peterson, two years; Mary Sell, one year; Aaron Albrecht, nine months; Justin Berth, nine months; Matthew Petrie, three months and Timothy Steinbach, three months.


2000      Vandals at Watertown Parks

06 17       The city is shelving for this year the idea of hiring an auxiliary police patrol to keep a lookout for vandals at Watertown parks.  “It is not going to happen.  There is no money budgeted for it this year,” said Park and Recreation Director John Steber.  But the patrol could become a reality in 2001.  “We will review with the police department what measures can be taken and addressed in the 2001 budget about possibly providing park security next year,” Steber said this week.   WDT



05 13       The number of Watertown Police Department Auxiliary members has diminished in recent years but the Watertown Police Department hopes to increase the force from its current low.  “At one time, we used to have about 30 in the auxiliary, but now we have only eight,” noted Capt. William “Bill” Connor, longtime member of the organization where he serves as crew scheduler.  He is the longest serving member of the auxiliary, with 46 years in uniform.  Connor, 70, and other members of the auxiliary are being asked to do more with less resources as the city grows and members dwindle.  “It works better if we can rotate for events,” he said.   WDT


2012      Citizen Police Academy; meets monthly from September to June

L-R:  Dan Biernacki, John Kaliebe, Pam Capin, Bruce Christian, Lynn Grulke, Dawn Justmann, Linda Bargo and Marie Biernacki.