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Nine cadets complete Law Enforcement Academy

Nine Cadets
Simpson County Law Enforcement Training Academy graduate were Don Ahshapanek, Garrett Irwin and Matthew Wooten of Carthage, Mississippi; Tyler Massey of Sallis, Mississippi, Pryce Hunter and David Soto of Brandon, Mississippi, Michael Jones of Pinola, Mississippi and Chris Rogers of Columbia, Mississippi.

“Co-Lin, in partnership with the Simpson County Sheriff’s Office, has just complete the thirteenth Simpson County Law Enforcement Officer Training Academy (SCLEOTA) in which cadets participated in more than 366 hours of rigorous training encompassing firearms, self-defense, use of force, civil liability, wildlife and active shooter situations, among other subjects.

The participating cadets are now eligible for a part-time law enforcement training certificate, which they can hold as long as they are employed by a law enforcement agency.

SCLEOTA is authorized to teach under the State of Mississippi Board of Minimum Standards and Training for Law Enforcement Officers. The academy is staffed by State Certified Law Enforcement Officers, directed by Simpson County Sheriff Paul Mullins, and managed by Co-Lin Workforce Education Coordinator Robin Mitchell.

A recent graduation event for Class XIII cadets at Co-Lin’s Simpson County Center featured a host of speakers and well-wishers. Mississippi 13th Circuit Court District Judge Matt Sullivan was the keynote speaker. SCLEOTA Lead Instructor and Simpson County Sheriff’s Deputy Clay McPherson recognized the Most Outstanding Overall Graduate (Top Cop) Matthew Wooten, Most Outstanding Firearms Graduate Chris Rogers, Most Outstanding Physical Fitness Award Pryce Hunter and Most Outstanding Academic Graduate Matthew Wooten. A reception for cadets and their families was held following the ceremony.

Class XIII graduating cadets included Leake County Sheriff’s Office sponsored cadets Matthew Wooten and Tyler Massey, Pelahatchie Police Department sponsored cadets Garrett Irwin and David Soto, Mendenhall Police Department sponsored cadet Michael Jones, Columbia Police Department sponsored cadet Chris Rogers, Pearl Police Department sponsored cadet Pryce Hunter, Walnut Grove Police Department sponsored cadet Don Ahshapanek. Walter Burkett of Mendenhall and Chris Jones of Brandon completed a 200-hour refresher course as part of the Academy.

Enrollment for the 2022 Class XIV training session is now open. Individuals must be at least 21 years of age, have a high school diploma or equivalent, hold a current driver’s license, pass a criminal background check, and possess a clean arrest record. Participants must pass a physical fitness test, a medical examination, and be mentally stable. Additionally, future officers must have a strong desire to serve the public. The training session starts in July 2022 and will last approximately 18 weeks.

Applications are available at the Simpson County Sheriff Department. Additional information regarding student cost and the possibility of funding assistance will be available closer to the start of the session. For more information contact Clay McPherson at (601) 847-2155.


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