Cedar Hill PD Welcomes New Officers
CEDAR HILL – The City of Cedar Hill Police Department swore in three new officers last month during a time when the profession is rumored to be losing, not gaining, qualified men and women.
“Retaining and recruiting police officers has been very challenging the last few years,” said Cedar Hill Police Chief Ely Reyes. “The number of applications has dropped significantly due to many of the negative stories surrounding policing. All of the police departments are recruiting from the same pool and we need to offer something other than a job.”
The three new hires come from diverse backgrounds as well.
Ariana Cox is a Hispanic female from south Oak Cliff. Tyrone Morris was born and raised on what he called a “small island located in the Caribbean named Jamaica”. And Eugene Suk, is of Korean heritage and moved to Dallas from Queens, New York after serving in the United States Marine Corps for four years.
The three started their Academy Training on January 11 at Tarrant County College and they graduated on June 2. On June 7, they were sworn in as Cedar Hill Police Officers.
The Appeal Of Cedar Hill
Cox was a Collections Representative for 11 years but said “From a young age, I always thought about being a police officer. For career day at my elementary school, a woman police officer came to speak to my class and I thought that she was so cool being a woman and a police officer. She explained all the different areas that a police officer could work in like homicide and narcotics and from then on, I knew that this was something I wanted to pursue. I have always loved being able to help people and solve things, so I think I would one day love to be a homicide detective.”
Cedar Hill appealed to her because she said it was a smaller suburb. She didn’t want to be just another badge in the department.
“What I like so far is responding to calls where someone needs our assistance and we have been able to help them,” she said.
Suk said he always wanted to be a police officer “I really couldn’t see myself doing anything else,” he added. “I applied all over Dallas, however after my interview with Cedar Hill PD I was drawn to this department. The camaraderie and the way the officers interacted with each other really appealed to me.”
Jamaican native Morris moved to the Unites States five years ago after completing 13 years of military service with the Jamaica Defense Force.
“Premiere Police Department In SW Region”
“I have an amazing wife and four beautiful children who are supportive of my career choice,” he said. “As a young man growing up, I was interested in three professions; professional soccer player, military and law enforcement. I realized early in my life that I wasn’t at the elite level to make it as a professional soccer player, so I moved to my second love and joined the military at age 20. When my wife and I got married we decided that I would migrate here, so I had to resign from the military, which lead me to my third love, law enforcement.
When I made the decision to live in the United States, I decided that I was going to pursue one of my old dreams to become a police officer. I remember my time in the military working alongside police officers it was always a fulfilling experience.”
Morris said he is drawn to the variety of options law enforcement offers including patrol officer, detective, and K9 handler, to name a few.
“This career also gives you the opportunity to see, do and learn things that the average person would not,” he said and added Cedar Hill PD appealed to him because “Cedar Hill Police Department is the premier police department in the southwest region. Cedar Police department has the best clearance rate as it relates to criminal offenses, comparing to other department in the southwest region, and also has the lowest percentage in violent crime, which speaks volume about the department.”
Culture Of Cedar Hill Impacts Recruiting & Retention
Reyes added that just like any organization, the culture of the city and the department has a huge impact on recruiting and retention. He said that is why he received these three fine candidates for employment.
“We have a very family, community centric culture, focused on doing things “The Cedar Hill Way” and that culture has helped to recruit and retain the type of officer we need serving our community,” Reyes concluded. “We have a lot of support from our community, elected officials and city administration and because of that, we have been able to increase salaries to ensure that we are competitive with other like size agencies.”