Abby grad starts job as new CAPD officer
A 2014 graduate of Abbotsford High School has come back to his hometown to be the newest officer on the Colby-Abbotsford Police Department.
Eric English, 24, started his new job with the CAPD last week, filling a vacancy left by Chris Brandner, who accepted a job with Marathon County.
After graduating from high school six years ago, English attended college at Waldorf University in northern Iowa, where he played basketball and earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice.
He returned to Wisconsin in 2018 and entered the police academy at Northcentral Technical College, graduating from there in December of that year.
His first job in law enforcement was with the Clark County Sheriff’s Department, who hired him as a reserve officer in early 2019. He said he was a part-timer working full-time hours, doing everything from patrol duty and ATV patrols in the parks to prisoner tranports and court security.
English said his experience with the sheriff’s department was a good introduction to law enforcement, as he had to learn a lot on the job.
“That reserve program is really good; they just throw you out there and you figure it out,” he said. “They can’t teach you everything.”
As a reserve officer, English got his own squad car and worked 2 p.m. to 2 a.m. shifts on the weekends, patrolling the entire county and providing backup to deputies who needed it. Eric’s twin brother, Michael English, also worked as a reserve officer for the sheriff’s department and was hired as a full-time deputy in March. Eric says he will also continue to be a reserve officer for the sheriff’s department in addition to being a CAPD officer.
When the job opened up at the CAPD earlier this year, English said he thought it would be a good fit for him because he grew up here and got to know the other officers when he’d provide backup assistance as a county officer.
“They’re a good group of guys to work with,” he said.
Also, English did an internship with the CAPD in the summer of 2018, an experience that “shifted my perspective on law enforcement,” he said, and motivated him to continue down that career path.
“I like helping people,” he said. “I mean, this job certainly isn’t all about arresting people.”