Sheriff's Explorers
click on pictures to enlarge
Early 70's photo of male and female
The males are wearing the deputy style
hat with cap piece.
The females are wearing an obsolete
Explorer cloth
Explorer shoulder patch.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department sponsors one of the largest Explorer
Programs in the United States. There are presently 20 different Explorer Posts in the
Sheriff's Department.


Deputy Explorers perform non-hazardous law enforcement functions such as; writing
crime reports, public finger printing, crowd control at civic events and parades, traffic
direction, answering telephones at the complaint desk, crime prevention programs
and countless other law enforcement functions. In addition, Deputy Explorers ride
with Regular Deputies on Law Enforcement patrol assignments. They observe and
participate in actual patrol and law enforcement operations.

Explorers receive training in subjects such as community relations, leadership,
criminal law, firearm safety, weaponless defense and police procedures. Exploring is a
great way for youth to examine law enforcement as a possible career.

The History of the Los Angeles County
Sheriff's Department
In December of 1969,  the Department graduated their first class of
Explorers.  Class # 1.  Darrell Klasey was a part of that class and has
documented his application process, acceptance into the program, and
subsequent graduation.
Class # 1 graduated in December, 1969.  Our class was the one that
selected the style of Explorer patch, still worn today.
The choices were the one we picked and the LAPD-style Explorer patch.  
While the patches were ready at graduation, the cap badges were not.  
We had to borrow some from LAPD.

As I recall, 22 started in our class and 16 graduated.  7 from my post in
Norwalk and 9 from Newhall Station.

Ride-alongs were allowed, but not in uniform initially, and not in the city
in which we lived.  We had to wear ties and slacks, but could carry our
flashlights in our flashlight holders.  Our only means of identification
were the ID card and the Explorer cap badge.  Cloth badges were not in
use then and metal badges were never allowed.  The Department wanted
the Explorers to look like they belonged but not too much like Deputies.  
The date the Department authorized the Explorer "Star" is not know at
this time.

Females were allowed after the program was going awhile.  The first 2-3
academy classes were all male.

Darrell Klasey
Recruitment flyer
Responses from the County regarding his application.
Cap patch
Graduation Explorer Class # 1.
Norwalk Station.
Darrell Klasey is fourth from the
Class # 1 graduation photo with
Sheriff Peter J. Pitchess.
Class # 1 marching at graduation.
Class # 1 marching at graduation.  Note the
use of LAPD cap badges.
Explorer Klasey receiving his certificate
from Sheriff Peter J. Pitchess
Explorer graduation announcement.
Explorer graduation ceremony program.
Explorer graduation certificate for
Darrell Klasey.
Explorer identification card.
Explorer graduation in the news.
Explorer Klasey in early 1970's.  
Note Explorer cap piece and lack
of cloth badge.
Explorer Klasey in early 1970's.
Explorers at Norwalk Station early '70s.
Note two types of uniform for females.
Explorers at FBI Office, 1971.
No cloth badges.
Explorers at FBI Office, 1972.
No cloth badges yet.
Letter of Commendation.
Letter of Commendation.
Thank you from Sheriff Pitchess for
participation in the Tournament of
Roses 1970.
Norwalk Station In-Service roster.
Explorers are designated as LEEP.
Explorer Newletter:  The Limelight.
Explorers in the Whittier Daily News
June 1973.  
Darrell Klasey today and a short biography.
After his Explorer career, Darrell went on to complete his BS degree in Criminal
Justice from Cal State Long Beach.

Following college, Darrell began a career in forensic indentification (34 years and still
going strong) with Palm Springs Police, the San Luis Obispo Police, the Bureau of
ATF, and now, the Solano County Sheriff's Office.

Darrell served as historian for the San Luis Obispo Police during the 12 years he was
there, writing a police history column for the city employees' newsletter.  He is
currently serving (since2001) as the Historian for the California State Division -
International Association for Identification, the second-oldest forensics association in
the world.  As Historian, he authors "From The Archives" in the California
Identification Digest.

Darrell is also an occasional contributor for the California Police Historian, published
by the California Law Enforcement Historical Society, and for 20 years (1982-2002)
wrote "Tales From The California Kid" for Police Collectors News.
For a look at the current Explorers and
their duties, go to:
Challenge coin
presented to Explorer
by Drill Instructors.
Not for sale.