The Union Police Department is at full strength with the addition of two new officers, Josh Camden and Austin Vancil.
Union Police Chief Norman Brune introduced the new officers to the board of aldermen Monday night.
“We’re very happy to have both of these young men (join the team),” Brune said,
Camden graduated from Union High School in 2008 and earned an associate’s degree from East Central College in 2012. He then transferred to Southeast Missouri State University, Cape Girardeau, to earn a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice in 2014, before attending the police academy. He graduated from the Southeast Missouri State Academy in 2014.
Camden worked at the Franklin County Jail for three years before joining the police department as a patrol officer.
He soon will begin a four-phase field training program that will last approximately one year.
Austin Vancil is a 2013 graduate from Union High School. After high school, he attended Missouri Baptist University to earn a bachelors degree in criminal justice. He graduated in 2017.
Vancil will graduate from the Eastern Missouri Law Enforcement Academy this week.
Brune said he’s pleased that both Camden and Vancil have chosen the Union Police Department because they are already residents of Union.
“Most of our department (personnel) are residents of Union, most of them lifelong residents of Union,” he said. “We have a reputation for keeping officers throughout their careers, I think, because of that. They’re devoted to the community, as well as to the department.”
Alderman Jim Albrecht asked if the department was at full strength with the new hires.
“We are at full strength, but we’re still missing a person on the schedule,” Brune said, adding that another officer is deployed with the military.
Brune said that the department was able to bring Vancil on right after graduation because of the other officer’s deployment.
Vancil is replacing John Monroe, who is retiring in January.
Both new officers read the Oath of Honor before the board.