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HPD Adds Six New Officers to Auxiliary Police Force - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

HPD Adds Six New Officers to Auxiliary Police Force

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New Harrisonburg auxiliary police officers New Harrisonburg auxiliary police officers

Harrisonburg Police Department Press Release

HARRISONBURG--Six new officers took the oath of office as members of theHarrisonburg Police Department Auxiliary Police Unit on Wednesday, July 2nd at 6:00 pm.

The ceremony marked the completion of nine months of law enforcement training prescribed by the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services.

Joining the department:

• Thurston Bechtel

• Donald Klotz

• Luis Rivera

• Jeffrey Fisher

• Anthony Hill

• Edward Blackwell

With the addition of the new members, the Auxiliary Police Unit will comprise 17 sworn law enforcement officers and four administrative officers. All are citizen-volunteers who dedicate their time and services in support of the department’s mission in the community.

The new Auxiliary Officers’ 256 hours of training, mirrors that required for full-time police officers and covered subjects like professional standards, the law and legal issues, communications, patrol operations, investigations, defensive tactics and use of force, and weapons.

“The Harrisonburg Police Department is proud of the dedication and professionalism of its Auxiliary Police Unit and the services its officers perform for the citizens of Harrisonburg,” says Chief Stephen Monticelli. “They are an important component of our community policing initiative.”

After Wednesday the new officers will begin a period of field training, working with experienced members of the HPD Patrol Bureau.

“Our Auxiliary Police Officers are a ‘force multiplier’— not replacing but working in addition to full-time police officers,” Monticelli says.

Auxiliary Officers regularly supplement operations of both the Patrol and Special Operation Bureaus and provide a significant police presence at all special events in the city, including parades, festivals, and charity events.

Since its creation in 2002, Auxiliary Officers have contributed the equivalent of $1.4 million in volunteer services to the city of Harrisonburg.

The unit’s officers are employed in or have retired from positions within the Harrisonburg school system, James Madison University, banking, sales, the news media, local small business, the medical profession, insurance and public relations.

“When they come to work, they bring with them their unique perspectives and knowledge of the community as well as their professional expertise, which makes them an especially valuable asset to the Harrisonburg Police Department,” adds Chief Stephen Monticelli.

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