Anthony Boonstra

Anthony Boonstra looks down as his father Jim DiTacconi pins his Douglas Police Department badge on his uniform. DiTacconi flew out from New Jersey to surprise Boonstra at his swearing in as a new DPD officer last week.

The Douglas Police Department welcomed their newest member last week with a swearing in ceremony for new officer Anthony Boonstra.

Boonstra, a native of Vernon, New Jersey, will be joining the force in early April, after three months of training at the Wyoming Law Enforcement Academy.

“I’ve always wanted to retire in Wyoming,” Boonstra said. “It’s a beautiful state and when I saw a job opening I applied.”

Boonstra spent four years in the U.S. Marine Corps and stayed in California where he was last posted.

“I put myself through the police academy when I lived in California,” he said.

He graduated the academy in 2012 and worked for the Department of Public Safety at the Pechanga Indian Reservation near Murrieta, California.

After City Clerk Karen Rimmer swore the new officer in, DPD Chief Ron Casalenda said that there was someone else who would pin on his badge.

Coming out from behind a doorway was Boonstra’s father, Jim DiTacconi who flew out from New Jersey.

“When he told his mother and I that he was moving to Wyoming we were very excited,” DiTacconi said. “We love Wyoming and I knew that I had to be out here for this (ceremony).”

Boonstra grew up in a law enforcement family as his father will be retiring this April from the Vernon Police Department after 31 years of service as a dispatcher.

Boonstra and his wife Nicole are excited about moving to Douglas in early summer and aside from training at the academy, finding housing is his first priority.

“I understand rentals are pretty scarce right now,” he said.

After the ceremony Boonstra was able to spend the weekend with his dad before his training started on Monday.

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