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Virginia Sheriffs’ Association
The Voice of Virginia’s Sheriffs & Deputies

PETERSBURG — Three new Division of Capitol Police officers graduated Thursday night, March 29, from the 90th Basic Law Enforcement Academy of the Crater Criminal Justice Training Academy.
In a ceremony at Good Shepherd Baptist Church, the officers were honored for covering 1,300 Department of Criminal Justice Services-mandated training objectives during the 26-week academy in Prince George County.

Upon returning to Richmond, the three Capitol Police officers will undergo extensive field training with division-certified field training officers before being assigned to their respective shifts.
“Our new officers have made a selfless choice to serve others with honor, and I applaud them not only for that, but for choosing a profession that is becoming more challenging by the day,” said Col. Anthony S. Pike, chief of the Division of Capitol Police. “We look forward to them helping us provide progressive law enforcement services to the Commonwealth of Virginia.” Several of the Capitol Police graduates distinguished themselves among the 26-member 90th class. Melanie A.
Pajda finished third in physical fitness, second in firearms (with a 99.4 percent score) and first in overall academics (with a 99.2 percent score). Officer Jacob R. Gilliam was second in physical fitness.

The three are:
Officer Jacob R. Gilliam, of Sandston, Va.
Officer Rodney R. Hodges, of Brooklyn, N.Y.
Officer Melanie A. Pajda, of Midlothian, Va.