Four school resource officers receive national certification

Published 2:21 pm Friday, December 22, 2017

Four members of the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office were recently awarded with national certification for school resource officers.

Master Deputy Ryan Walker, Deputy Danny Lindley, Deputy Tommie Cato and Sgt. Scott Flowers completed the requirements for practitioner certification during the annual National Association of School Resource Officers Conference in Washington, D.C.

In order to obtain certification, deputies must work a minimum of three years, complete a 40-hour basic school resource officer training course, a 24-hour advanced or supervisor training course, and 160 hours of specialized law enforcement in-service training.

Walker began with the Sheriff’s Office in 2001 as a court bailiff. His first school assignment was at West Rowan Middle. He was later assigned to East Rowan High. Walker’s current assignment is at West Rowan High. He’s been a school resource officer for 16 years.

Lindley started at the Sheriff’s Office in 2002 as a detention center officer. He was later assigned to patrol and, in the spring of 2014, was assigned to West Rowan Middle School.

He is dedicated to his school and has been recognized locally and on the state level for his work at the middle school. In November 2014, Lindley disarmed a student wielding a butcher knife and wearing a Halloween clown mask. The student had a second knife in his book bag, but he eventually put the knife down and was later evaluated by mental health personnel.

Cato is a retired North Carolina Highway Patrol trooper who began with the Sheriff’s Office in 2014. Officials said Cato was hired to be a school resource officer. He was assigned to Erwin Middle School and is now serving at East Rowan High School.

Flowers began at the Sheriff’s Office in September 1993 as a detention center officer. He has also worked as a court bailiff and a patrol officer. He was first assigned to Southeast Middle School and later East Rowan High School. He is currently over the school resource officer program.

“Your designation identifies you as one of the elite School Resource Officers in the nation,” said Matt Liston, secretary of the National Association of School Resource Officers.