If you see a new officer patrolling the streets of Ocean View, chances are it’s patrolman Troy Bowden.
“We’re excited to have him,” said Ocean View Police Chief Ken McLaughlin.
Bowden started with the department on May 2 and will be doing field training with other OVPD officers for a total of five weeks before he may patrol on his own. A Georgetown native, Bowden has been interested in law enforcement since he was in high school.
“When I was in high school, I was part of the Delaware State Police Explorers Program,” he said. “It’s for young women and men who have an interest in law enforcement. I was in that my 10th-grade year in high school, and started learning how to do routine patrol, traffic stops, learning the 10 codes — how to communicate over the radio. And I just had the urge to learn more.”
Following his graduation from Sussex Central High School in 2010, Bowden served as a seasonal police officer in Dewey Beach.
“When I ended the season, it left me with the desire and eagerness to push forward, to want to learn more, to want to do more police work.”
After completing his seasonal work, Bowden worked as a cadet out of DSP Troop 7 for a year and a half.
“From that point on, I just knew what I wanted to do. I just kept pushing forward.”
He later went on to work for the DSP State Bureau of Identification.
“I worked there for 15 months, so I got to see the forensic side of police work, how they compare fingerprints from different crime scenes, and things like that.”
After his time with SBI, Bowden applied to Milton’s police department and was sent to the DSP Police Academy, from which he graduated on July 31, 2015. Bowden served as a patrolman in Milton for nine months before joining the force in Ocean View.
“You have a family in police work, and that bond is unbreakable,” said Bowden. “It was a very warm welcome here. Law enforcement is a bond between men and women who do this job that cannot be broken. I was welcome here with open arms. They treat me like I’ve been here for three or four years. It’s a good bond; I have a good relationship with all of my colleagues here.”
Bowden said that the change from Milton to Ocean View was bigger than some might think, as Milton was a more residential community.
“Down here, you’re closer to the beach. During the day down here, it’s a lot busier. The difference I see is increase in traffic patrol,” he said. “Even though I’m from Sussex County, this particular area is new to me. I’m still learning streets. We assist DSP a lot. There’s a lot of roads and street names outside of our jurisdiction that I’m trying to learn because … we’re very in the mix with helping the outside agencies.”
In his career, Bowden said, he’s interested in working as part of a K-9 unit and with children.
“I like helping people — especially youth. Working with the youth is something I really like to do in police work. I just have that desire to help people. Anytime I can change someone from making a bad decision to doing something good in life, that’s always a job well done,” he said.
“You’ve got to think the youth is going to be our future. The way I look at it, if you can get a hold of a youth and teach them that police officers aren’t scary — we’re your friends, we’re here to help you.”
In Milton, Bowden said he had a good rapport with youth and hopes to continue that with the area children in Ocean View.
“I’d stop and talk to them, buy lemonade from the lemonade stands, or play basketball with them — those types of things. That’s what I like to do. That’s definitely a pro to this job.”
Bowden said he’s excited to be a part of the Ocean View community and looks forward to meeting its residents and visitors.
“I’m new, so I just want anyone who doesn’t know me right now to get to know me. I’m a very open person. I want everyone to feel like they can come to me with any questions they may have.”