‘Inspiration to Many’: CWI Criminal Justice Instructor Recognized for Work on Police Operation

Published: September 23, 2022

College of Western Idaho (CWI) Criminal Justice Adjunct Faculty, Vickie Gooch, helped chair an operation with Idaho State Police (ISP) to save six women in Boise from human trafficking.

According to a news release from ISP, agencies have been working on a human trafficking operation designed to assist women victimized by human trafficking since February. As part of the operation, detectives contact those believed to be in the illegal sex trade industry and offer them services to help get away from the lifestyle.

Gooch, who is a detective with ISP, has been employed in the criminal justice system for more than 40 years. She has been a detective for 33 of those years. In between her full-time job with ISP, Gooch teaches Criminal Justice courses at CWI, Boise State University and Bishop Kelly High School.

Gooch said she hopes to pass on her own experience and knowledge to her students, as she continues to work in the industry. She is hopeful stories like this can build trust with her students and show them there are encouraging stories that come out of the job.

“I want to emphasize there is positive aspects of policing, like this operation, where we don’t send people to jail and we help them,” Gooch said. “We're community-oriented and service-oriented. Some people just need help, and they don't need to be incarcerated to get that help. Bringing this information into the classroom is important to me.”

Gooch added there are hundreds of men and women in law enforcement who are doing the same type of operations to help others every day.

“We are so fortunate to have instructors at CWI who bring their experiences into our classrooms,” said Dean of Social Sciences and Public Affairs, Courtney Santillan. “Vickie has a plethora of experiences she has collected in her more than 40 years as a criminal justice professional. Her work on this project demonstrates the impact a career in criminal justice has on our communities and the potential for social change that is possible. She is an inspiration to many, and we are so fortunate she shares her time with our students.”

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