The Edmond Sun

February 3, 2014

Ceremony begins Edmond’s 4th police recruit academy

Mark Schlachtenhaufen
The Edmond Sun

EDMOND — Eight men, including three former or current members of the military, have begun their journey toward becoming an Edmond Police officer.

Spokeswoman Jenny Monroe said the Edmond Police Department’s new cadets are: Michael Kennemer, Greg Gardner, Andrew Miller, Niles Lick, Dakota Seales, Jon Horn, Andrew Deyager and Austin Redd.

Annual starting pay for the cadets is $47,025, Monroe said. They were selected out of a pool of 154 applicants.

Monday morning, the cadets participated in a traditional ceremony marking the start of the Edmond Police Department’s 4th Police Academy, a 20-week, 748-hour course.

At 8 a.m., on a cold but calm morning, they were brought out to the department’s training center east of Interstate 35 off Danforth Road. The ceremony included bagpipes, raising of the American flag and opening remarks by Police Chief Bob Ricks.

“The group of eight cadets comprise a varied number of people who all exhibit the characteristics necessary to become quality police officers,” Ricks told The Edmond Sun. “Many have military backgrounds or have studied at Bible colleges and all have indicated a desire to make a difference and keep Edmond a safe community.”

Coordinators Jeff Richardson, Kyle Stoy, Randy Payne and Bryan Weathers manage the academy.

Inside a classroom, the cadets received their standard issue gear. Nearby, holes in a squad car door made by bullets of various calibers illustrated the point that the doors are not for cover.

Applicants had to be at least age 21, various combinations of college and/or relevant experience, have an excellent history of personal conduct, behavior and employment and have basic knowledge of computers.

Cadets have to pass a timed physical agility course, which includes exiting a patrol car, running about 100 yards up an incline, climbing over a 4-foot chain link fence, running 15 yards, climbing through an open window, running about 150 yards, climbing over a 6-foot stockade fence, running about 40 yards and dragging a 185-pound dummy 20 yards.

Other requirements included passing a three-hour written exam and background checks.

A state law cleared the way for Edmond and other cities with a population of 65,000 or more in counties with a population of 500,000 or more to provide their own basic training academies. Department leaders said the agency wanted recruits to understand from the beginning what it means to work in this city and for the agency. | 341-2121, ext. 108