Grand Rapids Police Department swears in 14 new officers

Published on October 04, 2018


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The Grand Rapids Police Department (GRPD) welcomed 14 new police officers to its ranks today. Command staff, officers and city leaders joined the new employees’ families and friends at an oath of office ceremony at police headquarters. The Honorable Jennifer Faber of the 61st District Court administered the oath.

The police officers will begin their 17-week field training program on patrol Sunday. The field training supplements the instruction that 10 received at the Grand Valley State University (GVSU) Police Academy four months ago. The other four certified recruits served as officers for other law enforcement agencies or previously attended the police academy on their own. All 14 recruits trained in-house at GRPD over the past two months.

The 14 officers fill vacancies created due to retirements over the past six months.

During opening remarks, Police Chief David Rahinsky expressed pride in each of the recruits and reiterated his belief that law enforcement is one of America's most noble professions.

“You have made a commitment to yourself, to this community and to all of the loved ones who fill this room,” Rahinsky said. “You are selfless in your duties and bound to uphold the law. There is no greater or more honorable profession than that of a police officer. We are proud to have you join this agency that strives to set the benchmark for standards and best practices on a daily basis.”

According to Lt. John Bylsma, training unit commander, the department conducts in-house instruction and places a heavy emphasis on training so recruits are set up for success before they become officers.

“The recruits learn the expectations, procedures and critical skills that are best practice and the way we want our officers to handle certain situations,” Bylsma said. “We give them as many tools and repetitions as possible to prepare them for a successful transition to the street.”

This is the second class of GVSU recruits that GRPD has sponsored over the past two years. The third class is going through the hiring process for next summer’s police academy.

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