CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - The Charlottesville Police Department is welcoming five new officers, as it works to combat larger than normal turnover in recent months. A swearing-in ceremony was held late Friday afternoon. Those five officers joined the ranks after going through more than 5 months of rigorous training in the police academy.

Chief Rashall Brackney told officers they must decide now what type of officers they will be.

Recruitment and retention have become a top priority as the number of police officers dropped more than 20 below the budgeted amount. With officers in need, the chief anticipates 20 more cadets will start the police academy in July.

The Charlottesville Police Department is authorized to have 125 sworn officers, but the next wave of officers will hopefully get them closer to that number.

“We're actually hoping to over hire so that we don't find ourselves in this predicament again where we are under our staffing requirements,” said Chief Brackney.

“It was a decision I made about a year ago so it means a lot to me that I’m joining the brotherhood, protecting and serving, and especially this new community. I’m new to the city of Charlottesville and I love it here. It means a lot to me to give something to the city that has already given a lot to me in just my short time here,” said Officer Michael Flury, with the Charlottesville Police Department.

Officer Flury said he wants to give back to the community by attending events and really getting to know people so he can help them.

Chief Brackney said the city is anxious for new eyes, new perspectives, and new ways to get younger adults into law enforcement. The Charlottesville Police Department said it continues to stride toward their new motto of ‘service beyond the call.’

Charlottesville Police Department Press Release:

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA- The Charlottesville Police Department is proud to announce five new cadets as the newest additions and assets to the Charlottesville Police Department.
On Friday, May 24, 2019, the cadets will be officially sworn-in as officers after spending more than five months in the police academy.
Recruitment and retention have become a top priority for CPD due to larger than normal turnover in recent months. At one point, the department was more than 20 officers below budgeted staffing. However, with these new additions to its team, and at least 15 new cadets attending the academy in July, CPD continues to close the gap.
“After successfully enduring a rigorous hiring and training process, I am excited and proud to officially welcome these officers to the Charlottesville Police Department,” said Chief RaShall Brackney. “With the latest hires, CPD continues to strive towards policing excellence and to live up to our new motto—service beyond the call.”
The media and the public are welcome to attend a swearing-in ceremony at 4.p.m. inside City Council Chambers, located at 605 East Main Street.