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OPD holds graduation ceremony for 22nd police academy class

A batch of six new officers is now ready to protect and serve.

ODESSA, Texas —

Friday was a big day for the Odessa Police Department, as a batch of six new officers is now ready to protect and serve.

A graduation ceremony was held at the Odessa Marriott Hotel and Conference Center for the police academy's 22nd class of cadets.

They're now part of something much bigger.

“Oh no, this is great,” OPD Chief of Police Mike Gerke said. “We really believe that these officers are part of our family. We bring them into our family and bring their family into our family. They need to understand that whatever they need, we'll try to help them out, whatever they need. Let us know and we'll help you out, that is absolutely how we view our officers, as members of our family.”

The new officers will spend the next 14 weeks training on the job with a senior officer.