LANSING — Transformed from a security force that guarded the copper mines to the 3,000-person team that now enforces state law and patrols Michigan’s freeways, the Michigan State Police celebrated its 100th birthday Wednesday.
“We have such a rich history,” said Col.Kriste Kibbey Etue, director of the Michigan State Police. “Some days I feel 100 years old.”
Created by the Michigan Legislature in 1917, the department was first known as the State Troops Permanent Force.
“It was World War I. We were in wartime and we were considered an emergency force of 300 men to protect the copper mines,” Kibbey Etue said. “Our original mission had little to do with public safety, but now we’re nearly 3,000 sworn officers and civilian personnel.”