Wilkes-Barre swears in 8 new police officers

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WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) — Mayor George Brown swore in eight new officers to the city’s police department during a ceremony at King’s College Monday morning.

Wilkes-Barre’s mayor George Brown says they had more than 80 applicants. These eight now make 82 officers on the force and the third female officer.

“I feel incredible. Since I graduated the academy in 2018, I was waiting for Wilkes-Barre city to give a test. This is a department I’ve always wanted to work for, and I can’t believe it’s finally happening,” said Linsay Zarick, a newly sworn-in officer.

Four members of the group including Zarick have their certification. The city will pay for the other four to go to the academy, including Carlos Muniz who served in the Marine Corps. He tells Eyewitness News he understands continuing this line of work to protect and serve comes with many challenges.

“I’m going to do my best to do my job as a professional regardless of race, color or creed, none of that matters,” Muniz said.

The following officers were selected from more than 80 applicants:

  • Jude Allen
  • Carlos Muniz
  • William Wilk
  • William Ardoline
  • Matthew Derenick
  • Matthew Ogden
  • Richard Olshefski
  • Linsay Zarick

Mayor Brown says the department is changing.

“We’re doing more training than we’ve ever done before, we’re in the process of training our police officers on body cams,” Brown said. “I want those police officers to park their car at the substation, walk the neighborhoods, get to know the people that run shops, businesses but also get to know the neighbors.”

“Our goal is to do the right thing for the right reasons always and to have a community be by their sides and support their needs and our businesses in the community as well,” Zarick said.

These positions fill some current vacancies and retirements coming up. The mayor’s promise is to always have the fire and police departments fully staffed.

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