Marshall University police officer earns top academic honors at academy | Features/Entertainment

HUNTINGTON — Marshall University Police Department Patrolman Taylor J. Eastes, who joined the department in May, has earned the valedictorian award for the highest academic achievement in his graduating class at the West Virginia State Police Academy.

There were 38 individuals in Eastes’ class who completed the training in November.

“We are incredibly proud of Patrolman Eastes,” said James E. Terry, director of public safety at Marshall. “The academy is always a grueling process, but layer the demands of COVID-19 on the training and the course became even more challenging. He is a great asset to our department, not to mention a very successful student.”

In addition to his position with MUPD, Eastes is a student at Marshall studying cyber forensics and security.

“I’ve always wanted to be a police officer and am very happy that Marshall has provided me with this opportunity,” Eastes said. “To complete the academy, I had to take the fall semester off, but I’ll be back in class at Marshall in the spring.”

Marshall’s police department has an authorized capacity of 32 officers. Eastes was hired under President Jerome Gilbert’s initiative to expand Marshall’s police force, as the university’s footprint has grown to include a more robust health sciences campus, a planned baseball field and new home for the Lewis College of Business on 4th Avenue.

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