Last month, Milford Police Chief Kenneth Brown announced the retirement of Detective Sergeant John Horsman who has been with the department for over 20 years. A native of Milford, Horsman comes from a long line of law enforcement officers.
“My grandfather, Frank Horsman, retired as a Sergeant with Maryland State Police and my father, John Horsman, was Chief of Police in Harrington and later at Delaware Capitol Police Department,” Horseman said. “I went to college at Delaware Tech and then went into the U.S. Army Reserves as a Military Policeman. I have always been interested in law enforcement. I saw my father and grandfather suit up and head to work my entire life.”
Horsman grew up on the 100 block of Fisher Avenue near Seawatch. Just before starting ninth grade, he and his family moved to Eastman Heights. He graduated from Milford High School before attending Delaware Tech.
“My brother, Scott, and I were notified just days apart that we would be attending the Delaware State Police Academy in 1998,” Horsman said. “He was hired by Newark, and I was hired by the Town of Frederica. I left Frederica in July 2000 and started at Milford. My wife, at the time, had just given birth to my son, Tyler, and a year to the day later, my daughter, Karley, was born. I was so excited to work for the Milford Police Department.”
Growing up in Milford, Horsman skateboarded all over town and bought his first board from Jack Shaffer at Bike’s Etc. on Walnut Street.
“This hobby received a lot of attention from the Milford Police Officers as our launch ramps and quarter pipes would inevitably be in the roadway,” Horsman said. “The officers were always kind of cool with us. I suppose it helped that my father knew them. Once I graduated from the Police Academy, Staff Sergeant Dion Brooks, who has since retired, called me and recruited me. A year later, he was doing my background and I was subsequently hired as a patrolman.”
The biggest challenge Horsman faced during his career was making the community understand that the police department actually works for them.
“That’s why our social media program was started,” Horsman said. “Secondly, the police department is the men and women, both sworn and civilian, who serve the community, not just a building. As the population grows, so should the police department, both sworn and civil employees. Our police department, I can say as I live within the city limits, is vastly understaffed.”
Once he realized he had reached his professional goals and trained his replacements to the best of his ability, Horsman decided to retire. He has spent several weeks since his retirement in Iceland visiting his fiancé’s family.
“Det/Sgt. Horsman’s work with the Milford Police Department definitely made the city a better place,” Chief Brown said. “Throughout his career, he served in our Patrol Division, Drug Unit, Special Operations Group and Criminal Division. In addition to these assignments, Det/Sgt. Horsman was in charge of our firearms training and was instrumental in developing our social media presence. Det/Sgt. Horsman ended his career supervising our Criminal Division and our Special Operations Group.”
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