Indiana State Police (ISP) Superintendent Paul E. Whitesell has announced the promotion of Corporal Thomas L. Merkling to the rank of sergeant. Sergeant Merkling will serve as a district squad leader and will be the first line supervisor for the troopers assigned to the Ft. Wayne Post who patrol LaGrange and Steuben counties.
Merkling, 50, who is originally from Kendallville, is a 1981 graduate of East Noble High School. He was a member of the 47th ISP Recruit Academy and on Nov. 13, 1989, was appointed as a trooper and assigned to the Indiana State Police Post in Ft. Wayne where he served the citizens of Wells County until 1997.
In 1997, Merkling transferred to Noble County, where he continued his patrol duties until his transfer to the Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division in 2007. He was promoted to the rank of corporal in September of this year and served as a district duty officer for the Ft. Wayne Post.
During his career, Merkling has served the department as a field training officer, a member of the tactical intervention platoon, an aircraft crash investigator, a crash reconstructionist, and a drug recognition expert. He has also served as a certified Indiana Law Enforcement Instructor in first aid, speed timing devices, photogrammerty, emergency vehicle operation and traffic occupant protection strategies (T.O.P.S)
Merkling and his wife have three children and are residents of rural Avilla in Noble County.