Two employees of the Patrick County Sheriff’s Office graduated from the Piedmont Regional Criminal Justice Training Academy in Martinsville on March 15.
Sheriff Dan Smith said that Christian Gilbert of Stella and Tennille Jessup of Claudville both completed the seven-month training program, certifying them in law enforcement, corrections, civil process and court security.
The certifications are granted through the Department of Criminal Justice Services, which sets training standards for all law enforcement agencies throughout Virginia, Smith said.
Fourteen other officers from four different law enforcement agencies also completed the training.
Gilbert was recently hired after completing his associate’s degree in administration of justice from Patrick Henry Community College. Gilbert finished with the second highest firearms score among the graduates, earning him the silver medal in the firearms training phase.
Jessup has worked as a deputy for Patrick County since 2014 and completed the corrections, civil process and court security portion of the academy at that time. She was employed for three years as a deputy in Surry County, N.C., prior to joining the local sheriff’s office.
Jessup holds a bachelor’s degree from Gardner-Webb University.
Gilbert will be assigned to jail/corrections operations and Jessup will be assigned to criminal investigations, focusing on crimes against children.
The sheriff said that the two new graduates are replacing recently retired employees.