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April 9, 2013

City swears in two officers; three more in academy

RICHMOND — Two young Richmond men graduated from the Department of Criminal Justice Training’s police academy at 11 a.m. Friday. Two hours later, they were standing in City Hall being sworn in as police officers by Mayor Jim Barnes.

After 18 weeks in the academy, Neal Barnes and Kevin Carman will spend another 18 weeks with field-training officers before they may work independently, according to Police Chief Larry Brock.

Three more candidates are in other academy classes, with two expected to graduate in June and the other in July, the chief said.

Another candidate is expected to enter the academy in June.

In addition to Barnes and Carman, two other officers are in field training.

Counting those in or accepted to the academy, the department is only two officers short of its budgeted strength of 60, Brock said. However, the chief expects an officer to leave in the near future for employment with another agency.

However, the police department has 13 qualified applicants to fill the two, and possibly three, positions, Brock said.

The city has a federal grant that will pay two-thirds of the salary and benefits of three new officers if they are military veterans. One of the candidates enrolled in the academy is a veteran, Brock said. He hopes one or two candidates can take advantage of the veterans’ grant.

Candidates begin drawing their pay, a little more than $34,100 annually, when they enter the academy. After they have been on the job for 18 months, including time in training, they qualify for the 2-percent pay raise that all city employees received last fall, Brock said. That increases their annual base pay by nearly $800.

Bill Robinson can be reached at or at 624-6690.

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