Today law enforcement officers were honored with the Harold D. Hettrick Investigative Excellence Award for an investigation that began nearly nine years ago.
The team of more than a dozen men were brought together from different states and departments to be awarded for their outstanding teamwork.
The team of investigators worked together on a case called "Project Treed" to convict four men who illegally hunted and transported bears, bobcats and coyotes across state lines. Each of the men were prosecuted for violations of the Lacey Act in January of 2013.
Tod Schaller, the chief conservation warden with the department of natural resources, said, "It was a great case that kind of highlights what the Harold Hettrick Investigative Excellence Award was really about."
The Harold D. Hettrick Award was established back in 2009 with the help of the Hettrick family. Two of Harold's daughters say they try and make it to the ceremony every time the award is given out.
"A member of the family always hopes to be here as long as we can," said Lynne Hettrick, "It's our honor to be here to honor these people who work so hard to protect the environment that we all take for granted."
The daughters also said the award was created not only to honor their late father, but to promote excellence within the law enforcement community. They want officers to try and achieve the standards that their father set and lived by.