Shelbyville adds new cop

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By Lisa King

Wednesday was a special day for Shelbyville Police Officer Terry Putnam, and it started off on a serious note as he raised his right hand before Judge Charles Hickman to be sworn in as the department’s newest officer.

“It’s good to have Terry on board,” said Shelbyville Police Chief Robert Schutte.

“He brings a variety of experience from various communities, including Florida and Hawaii, and he will definitely be an asset to us.”

Shelbyville Mayor Tom Hardesty, who attended Putnam’s swearing-in ceremony at the police department, agreed.

“I’m very pleased to have him join our force,” he said. “He’s got a lot of experience.”

Putnam, a Michigan native, moved to Shelby County with his wife, Constance and son, Vincent, last year from Florida where he was a deputy sheriff for two years in a small community just north of Tampa. Before that, he was a police officer in Honolulu for nine years, a position he took after his stint in the military.

How did the family end up in Shelbyville?

“Well, we were looking for a place to relocate, and we picked Kentucky, and we came up the day after the ice storm,” he said. “We wanted a central location between Louisville and Lexington, and when we drove into Shelbyville, we bought the second house we looked at, and it’s worked out extremely well.”

After the ceremony, Vincent Putnam looked up at his dad, who was resplendent in his uniform, and certainly, very impressive to a little boy.

“He’s really cool,” he said, admiringly.

Quite an endorsement.

Constance Putnam said  that she had attended similar ceremonies before when her husband had joined other departments, but that this ceremony was even more special, because it was the first time that Vincent had seen his dad sworn in as a police officer.

“I’m just so excited that my son and I could be here to share this with him as a family,” she said. “I’m so proud of him.”

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Putnam brings the department up to 22 strong, Schutte said, adding that another officer is expected to come onboard later this month, and that should bring the force up to a full complement.