Pa. top cop may be established by year’s end

     Acting State Police Commissioner Tyree Blocker is poised for a full Pennsylvania Senate vote after receiving unanimous approval from a key committee. (Mary Wilson/WHYY)

    Acting State Police Commissioner Tyree Blocker is poised for a full Pennsylvania Senate vote after receiving unanimous approval from a key committee. (Mary Wilson/WHYY)

    The acting commissioner for the State Police is poised for a full Pennsylvania Senate vote after receiving unanimous approval from a key committee on Tuesday.

    Col. Tyree Blocker is returning to the agency 10 years after he retired.

    “I was proud to serve for 30 years as a member of the Pennsylvania State Police, rising through the ranks from trooper to major,” he said Tuesday. “I’ve worked in almost every major element of the State Police, including patrol, criminal investigation, organized crime, and administration. I sincerely believe I possess the requisite skill and experience for what I am confident is a challenging job.”

    Blocker’s job title is expected to be finalized next month with a vote from the full Senate.

    It will mark Gov. Tom Wolf’s second attempt to fill the role of the state’s top cop.

    The first appointee, Marcus Brown, prompted a backlash among current and former state troopers when he wore the State Police uniform despite the fact that he didn’t graduate from the agency’s academy and never served as a Pennsylvania trooper. Brown is now the governor’s director of the Office of Homeland Security.

    Blocker wore a suit to his confirmation hearing, but said he’ll wear the State Police uniform as he sees fit.

    “As commissioner, obviously you have discretion when you wear the uniform,” said Blocker. “Depending on the environment and the situation, we will wear the uniform. Yeah, not an issue.”

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