Mt Barker top cop Sergeant David Johnson to leave WA Police Force for role with Shire of Plantagenet

Headshot of Cameron Newbold
Cameron NewboldAlbany Advertiser
Retiring Mt Barker officer-in-charge Sergeant David Johnson.
Camera IconRetiring Mt Barker officer-in-charge Sergeant David Johnson. Credit: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser

After a decorated 25-year career with the WA Police, Sergeant David Johnson is leaving the force to take up a new position with the Shire of Plantagenet.

Mt Barker’s officer-in-charge since 2018, Sgt Johnson will finish up as a police officer on April 10 after accepting a role with the Shire last month.

He will take up a newly created position as the shire’s manager of works and recreational services.

His role will include work on youth programs.

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With his time as Mt Barker’s top cop coming to an end, Sgt Johnson said the new role was an exciting opportunity to stay in the community.

Mt Barker officer in charge Dave Johnson and Albany police officer in charge Ian Clarke.
Camera IconMt Barker officer-in-charge Dave Johnson and Great Southern Police Superintendent Ian Clarke at a fatal crash. Credit: Kellie Balaam/Albany Advertiser

The shire’s 2021 citizen of the year, he was integral in the creation of the Mt Barker Aboriginal Community Centre, and the Mountains and Murals Festival.

He is the coach of Mt Barker’s senior side in the Great Southern Football League

“It’s daunting after 25 years in police to have a career change at this stage,” he said.

“But I’m excited to get stuck in and do more work in the community.

“My wife and I decided that we wanted to live here and this was a great opportunity.

“I thank the people of Mt Barker for their support of our police in our town and I’m honoured to have been the OIC of police here.”

Outgoing Mt Barker OIC David Johnson.
Camera IconOutgoing Mt Barker OIC David Johnson. Credit: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser

Sgt Johnson had his first country posting at Boddington in 1998 before going into detective and forensic work.

He earned the National Emergency Medal for his service during the Black Saturday bushfires in Victoria in 2009, where he was part of a disaster victim identification team.

Promoted to Sergeant in 2010, he worked as a PCYC manager before moving into the youth policing division.

Sgt Johnson was awarded the Australian Federal Police Operations Medal in 2012 for his work with the disaster victim identification team on Christmas Island after the sinking of an asylum seeking vessel

Sergeant David Johnson painting his Co-op mural. Picture: Daryna Zadvirna
Camera IconSergeant David Johnson painting a mural. Credit: Albany Advertiser/Daryna Zadvirna

He became the OIC at Kellerberrin in 2015 then took the top job at Mt Barker in 2018.

In 2020, he received the prestigious Australian Police Medal for services to the community..

Sgt Johnson said his police experience would help him in his new position.

“Policing allows you to work in all sorts of fields and situations,” he said.

“Working as a forensics officer, in investigation, general police and youth crime, you build up a lot of skills.”

Mt Barker's David Johnson.
Picture: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser
Camera IconDavid Johnson as coach of the Mt Barker Bulls. Credit: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser

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