West New York kids get hands on experience at Youth Police Academy


It was a chance to see the real thing… young officers in training learning from 
police officers at the West New York’s Youth Police Academy.

“It’s not every child that says I will give up my time off to do this and I commend for having raised wonderful children,” says Supt. of Schools, Clara Brito Herrera.

The cadets are also reminded not to forget their journey; this is only the beginning.

“I don’t know of any other group of students to do what you did during this week,” Commissioner Susan Colacurcio says.

And because the cadets have people who care about them, a community — a school board.

“This is a family,” Colacurcio says.

The dream of a junior police academy got the green light from everyone involved.

“I have not seen a police department and a community work together so well,” says Police Director Robert Antelos.  “Our officers are the best in the world.”

“Not only keeping us safe day in, day out — but volunteering your time to spend the entire week training these cadets, making them better people, making them better leaders for tomorrow,” Commissioner Cosmo Cirillo says.

With different jobs in the military, many say this is one of their favorites, being able to teach the kids.

“I actually have to thank you guys because you are our biggest motivation and inspiration to keep doing better each and every day,” says Sgt. Kelsey Kneeler, of the New Jersey National Guard.

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Jillian has a passion for news, giving voice to the voiceless and telling stories that make an impact. A New Jersey native, she spent the past two years as a multimedia journalist/one-man-band at WTAP-TV, the NBC affiliate in Parkersburg, West Virginia, where she covered everything from meth busts to fracking to the homeless to a young man struck by lightening. She was her news director’s “go to health reporter” and also covered many education and political stories. She frequently interviewed the mayors of Parkersburg, Vienna and Williamstown, WV and Belpre and Marietta, Ohio. She interviewed OH Gubernatorial Candidate Ed Fitzgerald and OH Congressional Candidate Jennifer Garrison, as well as WV Governor Earl Ray Tomblin and WV Senator Joe Manchin. Jillian was a regular fixture at the local police, sheriff’s departments, prosecutors’ offices and courthouses. Many looked forward to her ‘Mom of the Month’ series. Her story about two women who lost their children to heroin was widely recognized, along with her much loved piece on the Battle Against Cystic Fibrosis band camp. In her free time, Jillian enjoys yoga; working out, live music, spending time with friends on both coasts and the Mid-Ohio Valley. Follow on Twitter @JillianRis


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