By BILL POWELL
The Dubois County Sheriff’s Department’s three new deputies are no strangers to badges and uniforms.
Ethan Gogel and Troy Leinenbach already wore a version of the sheriff’s department’s brown uniforms but are leaving their posts as jail officers to become road deputies. And Josh Hemmer has joined the sheriff’s department after having served almost six years on the Huntingburg Police Department and, before that, logging about four years as Holland Town Marshal.
Gogel, 28, grew up in Ireland, where he still resides. He is a 2009 graduate of Jasper High School, studied at Ball State University and says he knew public service was for him after joining the Ireland Volunteer Fire Department.
“I took a liking to public service,” Gogel says.
His fellow firefighters on the Ireland department include two fellow deputies — Mike Hanselman and Clint Gogel — and Indiana State Police Trooper Nathaniel Kern.
Gogel joined the sheriff’s department in 2017 as a jail officer and says his interactions with road officers cemented his decision to go in that direction with his career. When not on the clock, he enjoys fishing, hunting and working out.
Leinenbach, 30, was born and raised in Jasper and is a 2007 graduate of Jasper High School.
He graduated from Indiana State University with a bachelor’s degree in criminology and a minor in political science and legal studies. He worked as a Floyd County dispatcher for seven years before joining the Dubois County Sheriff’s Department as a jailer in 2017 and serving as a reserve officer on the Ferdinand Police Department.
Leinenbach started as a teaching major at ISU but listened when a friend, Ferdinand Police Department Sgt. Eric Hopkins, suggested he find out how he liked classes on criminology. Leinenbach said he was instantly hooked and decided then to pursue a career in law enforcement.
Outside of work, he enjoys cooking, hunting and traveling.
Gogel and Leinenbach were sworn in as deputies Feb. 13. Leinenbach recently became engaged to Kari Schwinghammer.
The appointment and swearing in of Josh Hemmer on Feb. 28 brought the sheriff’s department to full staff.
Hemmer, 33, grew up in Holland and is a 2004 Southridge High School graduate. He began studying conservation law at Vincennes University and became the Holland Town Marshal in 2009. After four years, he joined the Huntingburg Police Department. Now, after six years doing city policing, he has joined the county department. His first day on the job was Monday.
A vocational class on law enforcement in high school started him on his career path, Hemmer says.
“I decided this is the job I wanted to do,” he says. “It’s been a pretty good career.
Hemmer and his wife, Paula, are the parents of three children ages 4, 2 and 1. They reside in Huntingburg.
Outside of work, Hemmer enjoys hunting and fishing.
The deputies on the sheriff’s department are officers of the court, transporting prisoners to court appearances and serving protective orders, warrants and subpoenas as they respond to everything from traffic accidents to domestic violence calls.
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