Pictured are Southern Marylands newest police officers, who graduated from the Southern Maryland Criminal Justice Academy on Oct. 10.
[click photo for larger image] (Submitted photo)
LA PLATA, Md. (Oct. 20, 2008)—The Southern Maryland Criminal Justice Academy celebrated the graduation of 12 police recruits at a ceremony held Oct. 10 in Calvert County.
The 12 recruits completed a six-month training program, which began April 12. Four of the graduating officers joined the Charles County Sheriffs Office, three joined the Calvert County Sheriffs Office and five joined the St. Marys County Sheriffs Office.
At the ceremony, Academy instructors presented awards to students who excelled in four categories. Robert Nielsen of the St. Marys County Sheriffs Office earned the scholastic and firearms awards. Officer Nielsen achieved a 97.34 percent academic average and a final firearms score of 98 percent. Officer Dale Harrison of the Charles County Sheriffs Office received the physical training award, having earned 771 points out of 800 possible points. Robert Brady of the Calvert County Sheriffs Office received the vehicle operations award.
The class boasted a 93.87 final class academic average. Their class motto, chosen by the recruits at the beginning of the training program, was Stay Alert, Stay Alive.
Delegate Sue Kullen of Calvert County was the keynote speaker. Nicholas Valltos, assistant professor of criminal justice at the College of Southern Maryland, spoke about the articulation agreement between the Academy and the College, which provides each graduate with 15 college credits toward a criminal justice degree. Reverend Dave Mohler, a police chaplain for the Calvert County Sheriffs Office, delivered the invocation and benediction. Patrick Bradley, executive director of the Maryland Police and Correctional Training Commissions, shared opening remarks. The Academys board of directors Charles County Sheriff Rex W. Coffey, St. Marys County Sheriff Timothy K. Cameron and Calvert County Sheriff Mike Evans, the boards president and the class speaker, Deputy Heather Allen of the St. Marys County Sheriffs Office, also addressed the graduates. Deputy Andre Mitchell of the Calvert County Sheriffs Office performed the National Anthem on his saxophone and the Calvert County Sheriffs Offices Color Guard presented the colors.
The recruits participated in the first Southern Maryland Criminal Justice Academy Law Enforcement Memorial Run, which they ran in honor of Deputy Elizabeth Magruder. A 2001 Academy graduate and a member of the Prince Georges County Sheriffs Office, Deputy Magruder was shot and killed in 2002 while attempting to serve an emergency psychiatric evaluation. Her name now rests on the National Law Enforcement Memorial among those of other officers killed in the line of duty. The recruits researched and selected her as the officer to honor and ran 2.8 miles from the BG William Smallwood Armory on Hawthorn Road in La Plata to the memorial outside the Sheriffs Headquarters on Crain Highway. They also participated in the graduation in her memory and presented a plaque during the ceremony to Magruder's surviving husband and her son, who was 3 years old at the time of his mothers death.
The Southern Maryland Criminal Justice Academy congratulates the following new law enforcement officers:
Charles County Sheriffs Office:
Dale R. Harrison
Bryan T. Moore
Tiffany N. Schraf
Calvert County Sheriffs Office:
Robert C. Brady, Jr.
Andre D. Mitchell
Christopher T. Waldron
St. Marys County:
Heather N. Allen
Melissa L. Green
Robert A. Nielsen
Abbie J. Perkins
Timothy L. Snyder