CHARLESTON, W.Va. —  Four officers were sworn in to the Charleston City Police Friday morning at city hall.

Charleston Mayor Danny Jones and Police Chief Brent Webster led the ceremony with family members and other officers in attendance.

The officers will begin training Jan. 9 at the state Police Academy in Institute. After the officers complete 16 weeks at the academy, they will return to Charleston and complete an 80-hour orientation and supervised field training.

“We’ll have the senior officers training them and evaluating them daily,” Webster said.

According to Webster, the officers will be eligible in three years to apply for specialized assignments such as working in the detective bureau.

Jacob Whittington of Poca in Putnam County, said he did not always want to be a police officer, but changed his mind while studying at Marshall University.

“It’s not a desk job,” Whittington said. “There’s something new everyday, and I can always give back to people.”

James Smith of Harker Heights, Texas said growing up in West Virginia as well as his experience in the U.S. Army made him want to become an officer.

“I like to make a difference anyway I can,” Smith said.

Webster said it is hard for officers not to be nervous prior to the start of training, but it is a rewarding experience.

“That time period you get to know your fellow officers,” Webster said. “It’s an exciting time.”

Webster said four hires is an standard amount for the city.

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