2012-12-28 / In the Know

In the Know

Officers graduate from academy
By B. Michael Thurlow Special contributor

Recently three of Scarborough’s newest police officers, Ben Landry, Cody Lounder and Michael Thurlow graduated from the Maine Criminal Justice Academy’s basic law enforcement training program. The program began in 1972 with legislation that mandated standardized training for all municipal and county law enforcement officers. Over the years the program has been expanded and starting in June of 2001 all sworn officers in the state of Maine, including the Maine State Police, are required to attend the intensive 18-week program within their first year of employment.

Scarborough’s officers were part of a 60-member class including Marine Patrol, Inland Fish and Wildlife wardens, State Police and municipal officers from a variety of departments including Westbrook, Bangor, South Portland, Wells and the several county sheriff’s offices.

The curriculum provides a wide range of didactic and practical training opportunities including civil rights, ethics, cultural diversity, constitutional law and legal issues, traffic law enforcement, crash investigations, use of force, handling crisis situations and many other subjects. The program also promotes the importance of physical fitness through stringent entrance standards and ongoing physical training and evaluations throughout the program.

Each graduating class is unique in how they bond and gel into one cohesive unit during their training. At the graduation ceremony, academy director John Rogers recognized this class as one of the highest performers in the history of the modern program. Their class collectively broke several longstanding physical fitness records by both male and female officers. They had the highest class average academic record and seven individuals received perfect scores on their firearms certification training.

In addition to their physical and academic strengths, the class showed their compassion and generosity with one final act of kindness during their last week at the academy. At the end of each program the officers are granted their only night of freedom before graduation. Often the class will hold a party to celebrate the end of the grueling 18-week program. This class decided to spend their night helping those in need instead of celebrating their own success. They chipped in their own money and went on a shopping spree purchasing nearly 100 toys for underprivileged children that were donated to the Fairfield Police Department’s Cops Care for Kids program.

Congratulations to Scarborough’s newest certified police officers. You contributed to this impressive class and now have the privilege and honor to serve the citizens of Scarborough. May you all have long and distinguished careers in public safety.

If you have any questions about this article or any fire department issue, contact me at mthurl@ci.scarborough. me.us or call 730-4201.

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