Patrick Mulliniks, right, accepts his badge from Albany Police Department Chief John Proctor at a swearing-in ceremony at the APD Law Enforcement Center on Monday. Mulliniks was one of 11 new recruits to join the force.
ALBANY, Ga. -- Officials with the Albany Police Department have welcomed a new group of individuals who have been deemed worthy as serving as police officers in the community.
In front of the community and their family members, the APD conducted a swearing-in ceremony of 11 academy graduates at the Law Enforcement Center in downtown Albany on Monday.
After the introduction of the new recruits, APD Chief John Proctor conducted the presentation of badges and the oath of office.
After the family members present got a chance to pin the new officers and take advantage of photo opportunities, Proctor took the final few moments of the ceremony to welcome the officers, as well their family members, into the APD circle.
While addressing the family members on behalf of the new additions to the force, he pleaded for patience and understanding for their loved ones -- who are likely to endure times of high stress, and miss some holidays every once in a while.
"They have chosen a line of work that is very demanding," the chief said to the families of the recruits. "This is an awesome responsibility that they have stepped into.
"When they are beat up in the community and they are beat up in the press, they might not want to talk. All you have to do is hug them. They will think that nobody cares, but you need to let them know that you care."
While noting that the job of patrolling the streets can be a thankless one, Proctor encouraged the group to take pride in what they do -- especially in times during which their jobs are bound to get harder rather than easier.
"Come here and do the best you can," he said. "Some days you will feel you have done all you can do, your supervisors and I will ask you to do more."
The new recruits sworn in on Monday were Brian Andrews, Steven Serfoss, Indiya Robinson, Christopher Smith, Scottie Pannell, Patrick Mulliniks, Demetrious Kendrick, Charles Hope, Jeffrey Mitchell, Maria Perez and Christopher Baltenberger.
On an unrelated note, officials with the APD say there are still a few more slots open for the agency's Citizen's Police Academy class. For more information, call (229) 431-2100.