NEWBERRY — Officers Adrian Navarrete and John Hicks with the Newberry Police Department were recently promoted to the rank of sergeant. The ceremony was held in the courtroom of the police department.
City Police Chief Roy McClurkin said he began holding promotion ceremonies for his staff when he took over in 2015 as a way to show appreciation to employees for their dedication in the department and community.
To qualify for a promotion to the rank of sergeant, McClurkin said an officer must have three to four years of law enforcement experience. Candidates must also take a written test and go through an assessment with a team of officers from within and outside of the police department.
McClurkin said there is also a leadership aspect of the promotion where candidates’ training and evaluations are factored in as well as their involvement within the community.
“It is my belief that promoting from within the department is essential because you have highly trained employees that are vested in the community,” he said. “The citizens have grown to know and trust them.”
Navarrete has been with the department for over seven years, McClurkin said, and has more than 10 years in law enforcement.
“Adrian is a great asset to the department and does a great job,” McClurkin said. “He is short in words, but great in action. You know when meeting him that you’ve got someone that’s going to get the job done for you.”
Hicks joined the police department over four years ago, after more than 20 years in the military.
“John is dedicated, dependable and knowledgeable,” McClurkin said. “He is well respected in our department as well as in the community.”
City Manager Matt DeWitt said it was always rewarding to see the city’s officers promoted and being rewarded for their dedication and service.
“We are very proud of our officers and their commitment to the community,” DeWitt said.
Family and friends of both officers were invited to witness Wednesday’s ceremony. McClurkin said the department enjoys inviting families to these ceremonies to express to them their appreciation for allowing them to serve the department and community.
“Each officer should be commended for their service and dedication,” McClurkin said.