Little Falls, Minn. native gets his law enforcement career started in Devils Lake.
Devils Lake police officer Justin Posterick is just over two weeks on the job in his new position with the DLPD, but he’s already loving life in Devils Lake.
The fact that he’s an avid outdoorsman doesn’t hamper that either.
A Little Falls, Minn. native, Posterick graduated from Alexandria Technical College after going to school in Little Falls his entire life.
Acccording to him, while searching for his first opportunity in law enforcement, he was hoping to find a town that had the same small-town atmosphere that he’s known all his life in central Minnesota.
“I was looking for my home-town feel,” Posterick said. “At least somewhere in the same size. I wasn’t looking to head to a big city.”
In addition to his wanting a small-town environment to get his feet wet, Posterick also kept his own personal interests in mind while searching for jobs, and being the avid hunter/fisherman that he is, he determined that Devils Lake would be an ideal landing spot.
Because from what he had heard, there’s a walleye or two in Devils Lake.
“I was looking at things I was interested in, too, and here, you’ve got Devils Lake right in your back yard,” Posterick said. “I like to fish and hunt, so it fit everything that I wanted from a town.
“Luckily, I got an interview, and here I am.”
Posterick’s interest in becoming a law enforcement officer was something that he was hoping to pursue from the very beginning.
Not wanting to end up in a profession that bored him to tears, he appreciates the unpredictability of his new position, knowing that each new day could bring something fresh and exciting.
“It’s something new everyday,” Posterick said. “You’re always responding to different calls, meeting new people, so that was a big thing for me.
“And to do all that while helping people is pretty awesome. It’s a great feeling.”
As mentioned, Posterick is just a few weeks on the job, which is far too little time in order to fully judge how a new officer is doing. However, as far as Devils Lake’s newest cop is concerned, so far so good.
Police Chief Keith Schroeder agrees, but he knows that Posterick has a lot of work ahead of him in order to know the ropes, because according to him, it’s an extremely difficult position to learn.
“He’s gotta do his homework,” Schroeder said. “He has to learn the city, learn the job, learn the laws and learn how the court system works so that he can present his cases in the way the local courts want them done.”
Schroeder, who has been an officer for over 30 years and has served the last four in Devils Lake as police chief, has been there and done that when it comes to law enforcement. But even though he is far removed from job training and probationary periods of his own, he understands what Posterick is going through and knows that he has a difficult challenge in front of him.
“The first six months is just learning,” Schroeder said. “Even the first three years are learning. It’s usually about the three-year point where new officers hit their stride and they’re not calling the supervisor on every call.
“This is not an easy job to learn. There are so many complexities that are involved in this job, and that makes it difficult for someone to learn them all quickly. That comes over time.
“We know he’ll make mistakes. We just hope he doesn’t make the same mistakes twice.”
Posterick is currently under the standard six-month probationary period with the DLPD, which gives him the opportunity to learn the intricacies his new position before Schroeder cuts him loose.
But the young officer is excited to get started and is anxious to learn.
And he’s pretty excited about the lake freezing over, too. After all, ice fishing season is right around the corner.
“You’ll probably catch me out there every day that I’m not on duty,” Posterick said with a smile.