The Hawaiʻi Police Department’s 93rd Police Recruit Class Recognition Ceremony was held on Friday, February 12, 2021 at the Public Safety Building in Hilo. In accordance with current social distancing restrictions, this was a private ceremony limited to only police personnel and guest speakers. Friends, family, and members of the public were able to view the ceremony live by visiting the Hawaiʻi Police Department’s Facebook page.
The 93rd Police Recruit Class began their training on August 17, 2020. They started off as 24 strangers who had come together from as far away as Germany, the Philippines, Canada, Guam, New Jersey, Virginia, Oklahoma, Kansas, Moloka‘i, and from all over the Big Island. In the end, after six months of intensive training, 22 police recruits remained and graduated.
Officers came from a variety of backgrounds and previous career paths. Some had worked previously in the retail, restaurant, and hospitality industries, while others worked as a teacher, bus driver, an auto mechanic, and a park ranger.
Class Officers include Officer Michael Gusman, Class President, Officer Stephen Pangle, Vice President, Officer Jason Lin, Secretary, and Officer Jade Thomas, Treasurer.
Other members of the class are David Brunner, Dallas Arce, John Harvey, Ridge Quitoriano, Sean-Tyler Kepoo, Taylor Cruz, Margot Babauta, Rommel Constantino, Nevin Morales, Christian Madera, Mara Gaertner, Jared Tatsuno, Scott Hammons, Tyler Tayamen, Dansen Cabinatan, Ryan Pagdilao, Xylon Takata, and Jessie Welch.
Special recognition was given to those recruit officers who achieved outstanding performance during the course of academic training. The Academic Award was awarded to Officer Michael Gusman who attained and upheld the highest grade point average on weekly and certification examinations. Officer Rommel Constantino was presented with the Firearms Award for his interest and proficiency in the use of firearms and for attaining the highest rating in firearms training. Recipients of the academic and firearms awards will have their names engraved on a perpetual plaque, which is displayed in the department’s training room.
Officer Sean Tyler Kepoo was recognized with the Physical Fitness Award for excelling and maintaining her level of physical conditioning. Officer Taylor Cruz received the Overall Outstanding Recruit Award for his motivational and leadership qualities.
Our newly graduated officers will now undergo four months of on-the-job field training with veteran police officers before they are qualified to work alone.