Cash served as chief deputy of the Calloway County Sheriff’s Office
RICHMOND, Ky. (July 10, 2023) – Today, Gov. Andy Beshear broke ground in Richmond on a new law enforcement training facility named in honor of Jody Cash, who lost his life in the line of duty May 16, 2022, while serving as chief deputy of the Calloway County Sheriff’s Office.
Members of the Cash family, as well as state and local officials and staff from the Department of Criminal Justice Training (DOCJT), joined the Governor in taking a step forward to enhance the safety of Kentucky’s nearly 8,000 peace officers who risk their lives every day to protect Kentucky families.
“Jody Cash was a remarkable Kentuckian who dedicated more than two decades to serving and protecting the people of the commonwealth through his career in law enforcement,” said Gov. Beshear. “Deputy Cash sacrificed everything in service to Kentucky, and we will never forget him, his bravery and his loved ones, who mourn his loss. I hope by honoring him through this new law enforcement training facility, we will ensure his legacy lives on for generations to come.”
“While nothing can take away our pain in losing Jody, we are so proud that his legacy will live on through this new, state-of-the-art training center,” said Michelle Cash, Deputy Cash’s widow. “Throughout his career, he went above and beyond in an already difficult job to make sure he was supporting other officers, too, as they recovered from traumatic experiences and continued learning new skills. Because of that, we can’t imagine a better way to honor his life and celebrate his impact in our community and across Kentucky.”
The Jody Cash Multipurpose Training Facility will be a 42,794-square-foot facility with a 50-yard, 30-lane firing range designed for officers to learn intensive and specialized training. Construction is expected to be completed in 2025.
Jody Cash graduated from DOCJT Class 278 and as valedictorian of Kentucky State Police (KSP) Academy Class 89. He was a 22-year law enforcement veteran, serving with the Caldwell County Sheriff’s Office, the Murray State University Police and KSP. Cash retired from KSP with the rank of sergeant before joining the Calloway County Sheriff’s Office. Deputy Cash also worked with DOCJT as a peer mentor through the Kentucky Post-Critical Incident Seminar, supporting officers after traumatic or distressing events.
The new center will support training for all of Kentucky’s law enforcement agencies except the Bowling Green, Lexington and Louisville Metro police departments and KSP, which have their own independent academies.
Since December 2019, nearly 1,100 Kentuckians have graduated DOCJT basic training after receiving more than 800 hours of recruit-level instruction over the course of 20 weeks.
“Our chief responsibility is preparing Kentucky’s peace officers to safely serve their communities,” DOCJT Commissioner Nicolai Jilek said. “This new facility will allow us to further improve the already comprehensive training that officers and recruits receive while allowing us to deliver instruction in a safe environment that gives peace officers the tools and know-how to be safe while serving the commonwealth.”
“Investing in the training of our law enforcement at the Department of Criminal Justice Training is a direct investment into every community across the commonwealth of Kentucky,” Warren County Sheriff Brett Hightower said.
“The commonwealth’s law enforcement officers are the best of us, and we must ensure that they have state-of-the-art tools to assist them in their essential work,” Justice and Public Safety Cabinet Secretary Kerry Harvey said. “To all of Kentucky’s peace officers, thank you. We will continue to provide for you and your families in any way that we can, working to enhance your safety and to honor the debt we owe you.”
Today’s announcement supports ongoing steps Gov. Beshear has taken to support law enforcement while creating safer communities.
Since taking office, Gov. Beshear has awarded almost $8 million in grant funding to assist state and local law enforcement agencies. In September 2022, the administration announced nearly $2 million in grant funding to enhance public safety, curb the sale of illegal drugs and fight addiction.
In July 2022, the Governor also announced additional steps to enhance public and officer safety, including a Western Kentucky training site feasibility study and an increased training stipend for law enforcement officers.
In June 2022, Gov. Beshear announced the Military to Law Enforcement Program (M-2-LE). M-2-LE allows local law enforcement agencies in Kentucky to hire active service members within all U.S. military branches during their last 180 days of service.