sp; April 30, 2003 — Seaswirl Boats has donated five new boats to the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office for its Marine Division.
The five donated boats are 2003 1851 DC Seaswirl Stripers. Each boat was specially manufactured and modified, adding special features for police use, including a tower for lights and sirens.
Sgt. Marc Heckathorn, who heads the Marine Division, said the county would be unable to purchase patrol boats without Seaswirl's annual donation.
"Seaswirl was able to donate over $100,000 worth of boats to our program saving the county — and in turn taxpayers — thousands of dollars," Heckathorn said.
Seaswirl has been donating patrol boats to the Sheriff's Office for several years. Throughout the 1990s, the Culver-based boat manufacturer has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of boats to the Jefferson County.
The Jefferson County Marine Patrol operates on Lake Billy Chinook seasonally, from April through September. It is the most highly recreated lake in the state, requiring special attention from law enforcement.
Heckathorn said officers will put about 250 hours of time into each boat before they are returned to Seaswirl in September.
"These donated boats make our Marine Division possible," Heckathorn said.