Sheriff’s office is accepting applications for Thompson Scholarship

Deputy Neil Thompson

The LaPorte County Sheriff’s Office is now accepting applications for the Neil Thompson Memorial Scholarship. The $1,000 scholarship is available to any senior scheduled to graduate this year from a high school in LaPorte County who has been accepted to a college or university and will be studying law enforcement, criminal justice or a criminal justice-related field.  

Applicants are required to submit an essay, no fewer than 500 words, on why they will be pursuing a career in law enforcement. In addition, they are required to submit an acceptance letter from their college or university, verifying enrollment in the 2018-2019 school year.   

The scholarship was established soon after the 1980 death of Patrolman Neil Thompson, the only deputy from the LaPorte County Sheriff’s Office to be killed in the line of duty. He was killed on Sept. 21, 1980, when a suspect fleeing from other officers in a stolen ambulance intentionally rammed his patrol car. The driver was convicted of manslaughter. Deputy Thompson had served with the sheriff’s office for three years and was a U.S. Army veteran of the Vietnam War.  

In 2002, Ind. 39 from U.S. 6 to U.S. 30 was dedicated as the Neil G. Thompson Memorial Highway.  

In 2015, the sheriff’s office opened the scholarship to include students from all of LaPorte County’s high schools.  

Scholarship applications may be picked up at the front desk of the sheriff’s office on the main floor of the LaPorte County Complex, or from any of the sheriff’s office school resource officers.  

The deadline for applications/essays is Friday, April 27, at 3 p.m. The recipient will be selected by a panel that includes the school resource officers. The scholarship will be awarded at the department’s annual Peace Officers Memorial Ceremony in May.  

Applications, essays and proof of college or university acceptances should be addressed to:

Captain Derek Allen

LaPorte County Sheriff’s Office

809 State St.

LaPorte, IN 46350

Questions may be directed to Captain Allen at or (219) 326-7700 ext. 2283. 

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