Carson City officer set to ‘Cook’ in motor challenge
Though Carson City Sheriff’s Deputy Kevin Cook has only been a motor officer for about two months, his skills will be pitted against veteran officers in the Carson City Extreme Motor Officer Training Challenge next weekend.
Carson City will be hosting its 14th annual Extreme Motor Officer Training Challenge, a three-day event that brings motor officers from around the country to Carson City to compete, train and bond.
This year will be Cook’s first competition as a motor unit officer.
“I am not nervous, I am excited,” Cook said. “I want to do well, but for my first competition, I am more excited to learn the different riding techniques from officers who have been on for longer than me.
“There will probably be nerves on the starting line but I have no expectation to win or be in the top three, my goal is to learn. There will be riders who have been doing it for 10, 15 years and they will have a different way to do it and go through the patterns.”
He is the unit’s newest motor officer, starting his motor career at the end of March after passing the department’s school. Before that, Cook spent two and a half years on patrol and four years with the department overall.
“I love (being a motor deputy),” Cook said. “I grew up on bikes, I rode motorcross competitively when I was young for about 10 years, so I have always liked the image of a motorcycle officer.”
For Cook, being on the motorcycle brings a new element to the job.
“It is a completely different response to calls on the motorcycle,” Cook said. “You feel more out in the open on a bike, there’s an added element of danger. You are forced to be more vigilante.”
“It is so different than being in a car, you can’t even compare it.”
Cook said being on the bike has a number of advantages including being able to get into places other patrol vehicles can’t and getting special details like escort services for runs.
As a motor officer, Cook can be assigned to a beat, but will also respond to traffic calls and accidents. For him, being so heavily involved in traffic allows him to educate the public on laws instead of just giving citations.
“It isn’t just about writing tickets, but it can be about educating people on traffic laws you can stop people and talk to them and answer questions,” Cook said.
“And it helps mitigate accidents in town by conducting those traffic stops. It’s not just about issuing citations.”
For Cook, becoming a police officer was in his blood. His uncle was a deputy for 38 years, and Cook decided to follow in his footsteps.
“I always had a lot of respect for law enforcement, I appreciated the job they did,” Cook said.
To him, the job is about being there for those in need.
“It isn’t all about arresting people or issuing citations, it is about helping people,” Cook said. “Unfortunately officers get a bad image because people think we are just here to arrest, but we are really here to help and I hope that I can help so that when we see people in need, they will run to us for help instead of being afraid of a deputy. We are here to provide a service and protect the community.”
And the community can show their support for Cook and the other motor deputies at the Extreme Motor Officer Training Challenge June 22-24 at Mills Park.