The Lawrence Police Department added 13 new recruits Tuesday who will begin training as part of the department’s sixth-month academy before they start patrolling the streets.
Police Chief Tarik Khatib said that with attrition the department is six positions down from its authorized level of commissioned officers.
The department last hired a new class of 13 recruits last August. City Manager David Corliss has again authorized hiring additional officers than the department has vacancies to try to mitigate future attrition through retirements, military leave and other departures.
Sgt. David Hogue, of the department’s training unit, said the new recruits are schedule to completed the department’s academy in December when they begin field training with experienced officers.
The new recruits are Derrick Smith II, Samuel Reid, Jonathon Hamilton Slate, Jordan Kircher, Kyle Owens, Dominique Sloan, Blake Reed, Ryan Padilla, Matthew Leslie, Peter Kerby, Amaury Collado, Miranda Madrueno and Gwyn Fogarty.
The department operates its own training academy while most officers in the state go to the Kansas Law Enforcement Training Center in Hutchinson, a division of Kansas University’s Continuing Education program.
Hogue said that operating its own academy allows officers to train recruits as they become more familiar with the department’s supervisors, officers and detectives, and policies and local ordinances.
“It allows us to be specific to Lawrence,” Hogue said.
Two Douglas County Sheriff’s recruits, Michael Folks and LeRonda Roome, will also participate in the department’s academy.
In addition, Sara Mills, who has experience working as a Kansas University police officer, will take part in some of the training academy as well as field training with current officers. Callee Souders, who will serve as a new desk officer, will also participate in sections of the academy as well, Hogue said.