VASSALBORO — Maine gained eight more state troopers Friday after they graduated from the Maine Criminal Justice Academy on Oak Grove Road in Vassalboro.

After completing the required 18 weeks of training to become a police officer in Maine, the eight men underwent an additional 10 weeks of specialized state police training, according to a news release from Department of Public Safety spokesman Steve McCausland. New troopers now patrol with a senior trooper before starting patrols on their own.

Garret Booth, formerly a police officer in Milford, New Hampshire, who recently has trained hunting dogs in Caratunk, and Daniel Murray, a Messalonskee High School graduate who worked in security at MaineGeneral Medical Center in Augusta, will join Troop C in Skowhegan.

Mickael Nunez, a member of the Maine Army National Guard and graduate of Hope College in Michigan, and Sidney Stewart, who lived in Rochester, New York, and worked in the court system, will join Troop D in Augusta.

Jeremy Caron and Kyle Russell will join Troop E in Bangor.

Caron grew up in Fairfield and graduated from Lawrence High School and Husson University. For the past three years, he has been a Bangor police officer.

Russell grew up in Batavia, New York, and has owned or managed several restaurants, including the former Bugaboo Creek in Bangor and Cervesas in Newport, now owned by his wife.

Conner Walton, who grew up in Barryville, New York, served five years in the Coast Guard and has lived in Maine for three years, has been assigned to Troop A in Alfred.

Jeremy Pyburn, a medic in the Maine Army National Guard who served in Afghanistan, grew up in Hiram and graduated from the University of Maine, in Orono, has been assigned to Troop B in Gray. For the past three years he was worked as a welder.

Col. Robert Williams, the chief of state police, administered the oath of office to the new troopers Friday.

“You are entering a profession where you see people at their lowest,” he said. “Resist being judgmental and always treat everyone with respect and dignity.”

Six other troopers are currently in the basic police academy, but there is still a statewide shortage of officers. The 330-person department has 15 vacancies, the release said.

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