Police Reports

State police computer/cell/cyber crime unit gets new commander

Lt. Tara Thomas, new commander of VSP Technology Investigation Unit

The Vermont State Police Technology Investigation Unit has a new commander, Lt. Tara Thomas. A VSP release describes a unit heavily involved in computer, cellphone and cyber crime, including an officer dedicated to working with the FBI on cybercrimes.

As commander of the Technology Investigation Unit (TIU), Lt. Thomas will oversee the collection and analysis of digital evidence and assist with investigations by the Vermont State Police and local, county, and other state law enforcement agencies. TIU has five components:

  • Computer Crime Unit – Detectives assigned to this unit are specially trained to collect and analyze digital evidence and to conduct computer-related investigations. They also provide expert testimony, assist prosecutors with legal interpretation of scientific results, and train other criminal justice agencies in related topics. The Computer Crime Unit works closely with the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.
  • Cellular Device Investigations – Detectives assigned to this unit also are trained to collect and analyze all types of mobile devices. Detectives also are trained to analyze wireless network carrier data.
  • Polygraph Unit– Polygraph examiners are highly trained detectives who conduct polygraph examinations to assist in criminal investigations. This unit also assists the Office of Professional Development with the hiring of Vermont State Police applicants.
  • Executive Protection Unit – The Executive Protection Unit is responsible for the safety and transportation of Vermont’s governor. Members of the unit also assist with visiting dignitaries from outside the state.
  • FBI Cybercrime Investigator – This detective works directly with the FBI Cybercrime Task Force, assisting with investigations of national and statewide cybersecurity threats.

Lt. Thomas began her career with the Vermont State Police in 1999 as a trooper at the Middlesex Barracks, then was promoted to sergeant in 2008 as the agency’s public information officer. In 2010 she returned to the Middlesex Barracks as a detective sergeant with the Bureau of Criminal Investigations. She joined the Traffic Safety Division (now known as Special Operations) in March 2018.

She was promoted to lieutenant and commander of the Safety Programs Unit in December 2018 and served as the executive officer of Special Operations as the unit has evolved, where her duties included overseeing traffic safety programs, the department’s full-time crash reconstruction experts, recreation enforcement and the K-9 Unit commander, among other duties. She transferred to commander of the Williston Field Station in August 2021. In addition to those duties, Lt. Thomas has served on the Vermont State Police Crisis Negotiation Unit and was a member of the Crime Scene Search Team.

Thomas succeeds Lt. Greg Campbell following his retirement. The effective date of her promotion was May 22, 2022. She can be reached via Vermont State Police Headquarters in Waterbury at 802-244-8727 or by email at tara.l.thomas@vermont.gov.

Lt. Debra Munson, commander of the Derby Field Station, to commander of the Williston Field Station. Find out more about the Technology Investigation Unit, visit https://vsp.vermont.gov/criminal/technology.

Categories: Police Reports

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