New officers badged

Published 9:44 pm Tuesday, June 5, 2012

New Suffolk Police Officer Eric Brigham is pinned by his father, Scott Brigham, and his stepmother, Riza Brigham, during a ceremony on Monday.

Eight new Suffolk Police officers received their badges in a Monday ceremony at the Suffolk Center for Cultural Arts.

The event was held just a few hours before their official graduation from the Hampton Roads Criminal Justice Training Academy. The eight were pinned with their badges by family members, took the oath of office from Circuit Court Clerk Randy Carter and heard speeches by their new boss and other city officials.

“Public safety is the most important value, because it makes every other thing possible,” Mayor Linda T. Johnson said during the ceremony. “People do not come where they don’t feel safe. We are a very sought-after community, and that is directly because of people like you.”

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Police Chief Thomas Bennett summarized some of the training the officers will go through in the next several weeks. They first will attend “post-academy,” which takes what the officers learned at the training academy and customizes it to “how we do business in Suffolk,” Bennett said.

They then will spend several weeks with a series of field training officers. Bennett told the officers to take the best traits from each of their training officers to develop their own personal style.

“Whatever it is that you’re good at, work hard at it,” Bennett said.

Bennett also admonished the officers to be completely honest at all times.

“You must at all times be honest and have integrity,” Bennett said. “Not a little bit honest, not a lot honest, but completely honest.”

The new officers are Eric Brigham, Sheena Carach, Douglas Christian, Elizabeth Cox, Marc Drouillard, Matthew Reeves, Daniel Rowland and Franklin Towers.