Serving the community since 1922

Shafter Police welcomes two new officers

A ceremony was held at Bakersfield High School in which 32 trainees received their badges in a pinning ceremony after the trainees completed an extensive training program.

Of the 32 graduates, two of those were to become new members of the Shafter Police Department.

Officer Herrera was pinned by Acting Chief Randy Milligan, as was Officer Escutia. They were among 47 trainees that started the program over six months ago that were sworn in by Judge David Zulfa. The officers also were welcomed by Shafter Mayor Chad Givens, Mayor Pro-tem Cathy Prout and Councilmember Pete Espinoza.

Herrera and Escutia went through 960 hours of training. It included weapons and chemical agent instruction, report writing, crisis intervention and physical fitness.

"The training was very challenging, but we endured and are ready to serve our community," It Officer Herrera said.

According to Acting Chief Milligan, both officers left professional careers to pursue a career in law enforcement. "We sponsored them through the academy. They are not from Shafter but are from a nearby city."

The graduation started with a video about the training academy for the class of 2023-28, followed by the ceremonial flag presentation and the national anthem.

Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood reminded the officers that joining law enforcement is a great privilege, but also a great responsibility.

"You have an enormous amount of responsibility and authority. Never, ever abuse that, because your integrity is all you have in this line of work," Youngblood said.

It is not known at this time where the new officers will be stationed, or their duties. The department is in the process of preparing the substation in the Gossamer Grove area for an opening later this year.


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