New recruits join KPD

  • Courtesy County of Kauai

    The Kauai Police Department’s 90th Police Recruit Class stands with elected officials at the graduation ceremony at the Kauai War Memorial Convention Hall. From left are County Council Chair Arryl Kaneshiro, Mayor Derek S.K. Kawakami, graduates Charles Bedford Jr., James Paterson, Manuel Rivera, James Gause Jr., Jordan Kerry, Tyler Uratsuka and Councilmember Felicia Cowden.

LIHUE — Six new officers have joined the Kauai Police Department.

The new recruits were sworn in Thursday afternoon in a ceremony at the Kauai War Memorial Convention Hall.

After passing entry-level testing which included a written exam, six agility tests and extensive background and psychological testing, the new officers officially were able to start recruit training. The 28-week course began Sept. 24 and ended when the 90th recruit class took their oaths of office Thursday.

”As you can see, these are no longer strangers, but a close-knit family,” said Capt. Mark Ozaki. “The recruits have grown from individuals into a team. They have gone from friends to brothers.”

The new officers will get to work right away. Starting tomorrow, they will each be assigned to a field training officer who will oversee their on-the-job training for the next few months.

Charles “Chuck” Bedford Jr. was born and raised in Carson, Calif. Prior to joining KPD, he was a correctional officer with the Department of Justice Field Bureau of Prisons.

James Gause Jr. was born and raised in Charleston, South Carolina, and is the oldest of three siblings. After high school he joined the Army, serving for seven years as a combat engineer, including a one-year deployment to Afghanistan.

Jordan Kerry, from Pomona, California, is also the oldest of three siblings. He graduated high school in 2013 and received emergency medical training, firefighting and engineer certificates through a training program by the Hume Lake Fire &Rescue Department in California.

James Paterson grew up in Westchester, California. After high school, he worked for a family-owned construction business for many years alongside his father. He moved to Kauai in 2003.

Manuel Rivera was born and raised in Sonora, Mexico. In 2001, he moved to Arizona, where he graduated high school, later earning a bachelor’s degree in translational and interpretational studies from the University of Arizona. He was granted U.S. citizenship in 2013. Prior to joining KPD, he worked as a court interpreter for eight years.

Tyler Uratsuka was born and raised on Oahu and graduated from Mililani High School in 2014. Last year he earned a bachelor’s degree in criminology and criminal justice from Chaminade University in Honolulu.

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