Officer Schwartz sworn in by mayor

Pam Monson

    The city of Wilmington Police Department has another new officer, who was sworn in by Mayor Roy Strong last week and presented with his badge and departmental identification card.
    Officer Jacob Schwartz was introduced to the City Council during its rescheduled meeting on April 3. He comes to the city with a bachelors degree in law enforcement and justice administration from Western Illinois University.
    He was raised in Beecher, a small town on the east side of Will County that’s just a little smaller than Wilmington, where his mother was an auxiliary police officer. He still lives in his hometown.
    Having lived all his life in a small town, he is familiar with the small-town sense of community, and for that reason, actually chose Wilmington over larger departments that made offers of employment, said Police Chief Phil Arnold.
    Officer Schwartz was selected from the police department’s eligibility list, which is valid until March 2020. He replaces Officer Richard Santana, who accepted a position elsewhere.
    Once Santana gave notice he was leaving, Chief Arnold secured a slot in the next class at the police training academy. The new officer was hired just in time.
    Officer Schwartz left for training at the Illinois State Police Academy on Sunday. The academy offers a grueling, 14-week, 560-hour basic training course for law enforcement.
    Following basic training, Schwartz will ride for several weeks with a veteran field training officer, getting to know the people and places in the community.
    The most recent officer hired, Aleksandra “Ola” Sakowska, joined the department last September. She is completing her time with a field training officer and will enter the “shadow” phase of her training, during which a FTO in plain clothes will accompany her and allow her to handle all aspects of calls.
    Chief Arnold said Schwartz will be on the job before Catfish Days.