Barracks chief gets board's welcome; Police commander vows to communicate


Lt. Terry L. Katz, new barracks commander of the Maryland State Police in Westminster, was introduced to the county commissioners yesterday and immediately struck a deal.

Katz, a 29-year veteran with a background in criminal intelligence and police training, promised to keep the commissioners informed about law enforcement activities and asked them to share any concerns with him.

"I'm sure glad to be coming to my first command in Westminster, the state's flagship barracks," said Katz, 50, a county resident.

Katz called himself the "luckiest guy in the world" to be walking into a job where a $3 million barracks is expected to be completed in late summer.

"I have an excellent staff to command and soon will have brand new equipment and furniture," he said. "And where else can someone be assigned and have a wealth of experience to turn to than here? I'll have three former barracks commanders nearby in Ken Tregoning [Carroll's sheriff], Larry Faries [schools security chief] and Lenny Armstrong, the man I am replacing."

Lt. Leonard M. Armstrong is transferring to state police headquarters in Pikesville, where he will be staff administrator in the Field Operations Bureau.

Tregoning and Faries recently retired from the state police. Both had served in Westminster.

While Katz had not been assigned to Westminster before, his efforts have affected Carroll County.

Working undercover as an investigator and later in gathering criminal intelligence in drug and other operations, Katz said he often assisted drug task force efforts in the county. And he helped organize many of the drug forums designed to battle heroin use in Carroll County.

Two recent stints in the state police training division mean he knows many young troopers in his command.

Katz said he is happy to come into a situation where excellent programs are in place and others are envisioned.

Katz likes the cooperative spirit he has witnessed between police and leaders in government, community, schools and local agencies involved in drug treatment and prevention.

"What has been done here is being used as a model -- whole or in part -- in Cecil, Harford and other counties across the state," he said.

Commissioner Donald I. Dell welcomed Katz, noting that the county has benefited from several former troopers who have put their years of experience to good use after retiring.

Katz, who majored in education and history at Towson State University, said he will spend his first days assessing operations.

"I want to meet with the sheriff, state's attorney and the various police chiefs and will sit down with Mike College of the drug task force to learn as much as I can," he said. "I will have a lot of resources to draw from and plan to do so."

Katz said he and his staff will attend community meetings and forums and get to know those who can help them do a better job.

"I'm a big believer that people who can provide resources should have the opportunity to provide them," he said.

Pub Date: 2/12/99

Copyright © 2020, The Baltimore Sun, a Baltimore Sun Media Group publication | Place an Ad