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Prince George's County Police Department launches police cadet program

Those accepted into the two-and-a-half year cadet program will get real-world experience in police work, while also earning college credits. (ABC7)

The Prince George’s County Police Department on Tuesday announced a new Police Cadet program that will help get high school graduates and soon-to-be graduates between the ages of 17½ and 19½ on track to become an officer within the department.

“This program, I believe to be novel in its approach,” Police Chief Hank Stawinski said. “But I believe it also will, over time, create a cadre of more sophisticated people in terms of their approach to community and in terms of their understanding of policing at the beginning of their career.”

Those accepted into the two-and-a-half year cadet program will get real-world experience in police work, while also earning college credits.

“They’re going to be collecting evidence. They’re going to be doing crime scene searches," said Major Terence Sheppard, Commander of the PGPD Training Academy. "They could potentially be writing reports. They could be interacting with officers and citizens in the district stations."

Said Stawinski, “The value of this is that that young officer candidate, cadet, will have the opportunity to develop those skills before entering the academy."

The police cadets will earn a salary of nearly $24,000 along with benefits.

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