Kenora OPP Staff Sergeant Paul Van Belleghem worked his final shift yesterday.

Van Belleghem is retiring after 33 years with the OPP. He was appointed to the OPP in 1985 and posted to the Vermilion Bay Detachment. After 2 years, he transferred to Kenora where he spent most of his career. He was promoted to the rank of Staff Sergeant in 2012 and has been an integral part of the Kenora Detachment.

He has been involved in many aspects of policing over his long career. He talked about some highlights.

"I spent 10 years as a team leader for the emergency response team and that gave me the opportunity to do things, go places, across the province and have unique experiences you wouldn't normally get. So that definitely is a highlight for me," he said.

He also touched on the way policing has changed over his long career.

"Really over the last 10 years, I think people recognize that a lot of the thing we deal with in policing are a result of other issues. Whether it's homelessness, or poverty, or addictions. We've learned that if we can tackle those with our partner agencies it can reduce a lot of what we're doing," he said.

Van Belleghem officially retires December 31, 2018.

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