CEDAR HILL – Michael Witzgall’s career began when he joined the Marines at the age of 18. The son of a career military officer, he never dreamed his career path would take him where it has. Witzgall spent 12 years on active duty as a noncommissioned and commissioned officer, serving in the Marine Corps elite Force Reconnaissance teams and then later as a commissioned officer in the US Army Infantry and Military Police Corps.

In 1988, Witzgall left the military as a Captain and joined the Dallas Police Department where he earned 48 written commendations, two lifesaving awards, one police commendation bar for valor, two Certificates of Merit for valor and was the 43rd recipient for the Medal for Valor. During that time, Witzgall served as a patrolman in South Dallas and as a member of a tactical (SWAT) team.

Witzgall’s career with Dallas ended after a severe line of duty injury forced him into early retirement. This injury eventually led to the amputation of his left leg above the knee. Currently, Mike is co-owner of Charlie-Mike Enterprises, Inc., which specializes in teaching courses such as, but not limited to: Hazardous Warrant / Apprehensions, Basic and Advanced SWAT, Basic and Advanced Police Rifle, Hostage Rescue, and Counter Paramilitary Operations. Through Charlie-Mike Enterprises, Inc. Witzgall has also been contracted as a consultant to review and assist in upgrading security at Independent School Districts and private corporations. Since its inception in 1998, Charlie-Mike Enterprises, Inc. has taught more than 1,500 officers from as many as 225 different agencies. Published in his field, Witzgall has written numerous articles for law enforcement magazines and has published eight tactical training manuals.

In addition to teaching SWAT, Witzgall is a specialist in underwater salvage and recovery operations of small to medium-large size watercraft. Several of these “recoveries” have led to insurance investigations and the conviction of the claimants for arson and fraud. Through hard work and dedication (and with his wife Shelly always at his side) Mike has earned a reputation as an expert in Underwater Crime Scene Reconstruction, Evidence Preservation and Watercraft Recoveries.

"Sentinel’s Choice" is Witzgall’s first novel. A sequel is scheduled for release later this year. The book launch will take place at Barnes & Noble, Uptown Village, 305 West FM 1382 Suite 520 in Cedar Hill, on Saturday, Feb. 1 from 2–4 p.m. The public is welcome.