Wednesday, April 23 2014 3:24 PM EDT2014-04-23 19:24:25 GMT
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LUCAS COUNTY, OH (Toledo News Now) -
Thursday was graduation
night for the Basic Peace Officer Academy at Owens Community College.
Twenty three Lucas
County Sheriff's Department jail guards attended the academy on their own time
and at their own expense for nine months. They'll now be sworn-in law
enforcement officers, allowing them to bid on job openings in the sheriff's
department in the detective bureau, road patrol or courthouse security.
"It gives them the
opportunity to help them in their career ladder. This is a step to them," said
Lucas County Sheriff John Tharp. "They did it on their own. They have fire in
their belly and every one of them came out and didn't miss a day and completed
this on their own."
Other jail guards have
gone to the academy on their own dime and time, but never such a large group.
"I was ready for
the next point in my career and to move on and represent the sheriff in a
positive way," said Deputy Sheriff Lucas Blakeman.
"I'd like to get
out on the road or go to the courts," added Deputy Sheriff Christopher
This big Basic Peace
Academy Class is also good for Lucas County's budget. Sheriff
Tharp says it obviously comes at no cost to the county and will save taxpayers
$250,000 over a 10-year period.
"Now the county
will not have to send these corrections officers to deputy school when we lose
road officers and detectives. They will already be deputies," Sheriff