Part 1: Cadets Begin Their Journey into the Police Academy

Part 1: Cadets Begin Their Journey into the Police Academy

"I believe it is a little nerve wracking. You don't know what to expect when you come in here,” said Jacqueleyn Drukenis, a student officer.
FREDERICK, Md. - Almost 600 people applied for the 54th Frederick City Police Academy, but only 12 made the cut.

WHAG’s Dawn White followed the student officers for the past seven months and documented their challenges and struggles. In part one of her five-part series; we are introduced to the cadets at the beginning of their journeys.

April 1, 2013 was April Fools Day, but the nerves were no joke for the 12 student officers beginning their first day at the Frederick City Police Academy.

"It’s definitely a big unknown factor for them in the first couple of days. They're going to be nervous and apprehensive,” said Cpt. Richard Hetherington, Frederick City Police.

"I believe it is a little nerve wracking. You don't know what to expect when you come in here,” said Jacqueleyn Drukenis, a student officer.

Eric Morton, a Smithsburg resident with a wife and three kids, decided he wanted to become a police officer after working as a dispatcher for six years.

"My kids are really excited. My wife's a little nervous, but she's excited as well, “ said Morton.

The academy is training two officers to serve Brunswick and two deputies who hope to end up at the Frederick County Sheriff's Office, including Ben Phelps.

"I’ve always had an interest in law enforcement, ever since I was a kid. I always wanted to be a deputy, and that's what brought me here,” said Phelps.

The 12 student officers say they're excited to begin a new journey in their lives. They're expecting to hit the books hard and spend lots of time studying. Derek Inman will have to balance his time studying for the academy. He has a wife and two young children.

"For me, it's mainly keeping my head down and doing the best I can. I know it's going to be difficult at times,” said Inman.

"It’s going to be a long seven months for them. We're going to teach them everything they need to know to go out here, be successful, problem solve, deal with the community and be effective officers for all their respective agencies,” said Cpt. Richard Hetherington, Frederick City Police.

Curious faces, nervous faces and even a smiling face filled the room for the first day of the academy as the cadets take an eager step forward in their future careers.

 

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