The Vienna Police Department’s newest member, Officer Celines Fitchue, graduated Jan. 12 from the 82nd session of the Fairfax County Criminal Justice Academy.
The graduation marked the culmination of a six-month training session in which newly hired police recruits receive training in all aspects of police procedures. The six-month basic-recruit session is a non-residential training program consisting of more than 920 hours of instruction.
The curriculum includes, but is not limited to, 320 hours of academic studies, 94 hours of firearms training, 84 hours of emergency-vehicle operation, 110 hours of physical training and 130 hours of defensive-tactics training.
The Criminal Justice Academy trains new and veteran officers from Vienna, Herndon and Fairfax County police departments, Fairfax County Sheriff’s Office and the Fairfax County Fire Marshal’s Office.
To attend the academy and become a police officer, candidates must go through a rigorous application process that includes a thorough background check, medical examination, polygraph test and various interviews. On average, only 2 percent of people who apply to become a police officer make it through the hiring process and are invited to attend the basic-recruit class.
Officer Fitchue will be assigned a field-training instructor for the next 12 weeks. During this time, the instructor will observe and guide her performance in officer safety, traffic enforcement, interaction with the public, report writing, investigations of crimes, vehicular accidents and many other aspects of law-enforcement duties.