Recruits join Garden Grove PD after graduating from Long Beach Police Academy

By Lou Ponsi

Since May 25, Efrain Jimenez, Shaylen Mao, and Patrick Muschetto have been schooled in criminal law, cultural diversity, and community oriented policing.

They’ve practiced arrest and control techniques and de-escalation strategies, and become proficient with firearms and tactical communications.

They’ve been Tasered and gassed.

After more than 1,000 hours of training, Jimenez, Mao, and Muschetto have earned the title of Garden Grove police officer.

Members of the Long Beach Police Academy Class of 91, which includes three GGPD officers, toss their caps in the air at the conclusion of graduation ceremonies.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

With hundreds of family members and friends in the audience, the trio was among 45 recruits from Class 91 of the Long Beach Police Academy who received graduation certificates during a polished ceremony at the venerable Terrace Theater in Long Beach on Nov. 30.

In addition to the Garden Grove PD graduates, Class 91 includes two Redondo Beach PD officers and 40 who will join the Long Beach force.

“They have proven they are ready to face the incredible demands of a law enforcement profession,” Academy Commander Rudy Komisza said.

Patrick Muschetto receives a new Garden Grove police badge, which is pinned to him by a family member during graduation ceremony.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

The three new Garden Grove officers are joining a force of roughly 160 sworn personnel who work to insure the safety of close to 175,000 residents.

“It was not easy,” said Jimenez, who was named the outstanding recruit of the graduating class. “It was a rough six months, but it feels great.”

Being recognized as the outstanding recruit of Class 91 was humbling, Jimenez said.

“I think a lot other recruits could have easily been given this award,” he said.

Efrain Jimenez receives his new Garden Grove police badge, which is pinned to him by a family member.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

The recruits were trained in 42 learning domains, involving written and scenario-based tests and physical fitness tests.

“I’m super excited,” Mao said after the ceremony. “My ultimate goal is to become a detective and after going through the academy, I think what I want to be is a detective in homicide.”

While delivering her graduation speech, class president Paige White, who is joining the Long Beach Police Department, recalled the first day of the academy, when recruits were told that nothing is given and everything is earned.

Long Beach Police Academy Class of 91 salutes as Long Beach PD Lt. Greg Schirmer sings the National Anthem.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

“We realized the only way to get through the police academy was to come together as a class,” White said.

While the entire class came together and learned to work as a team, the three Garden Grove PD recruits formed their own close bond.

“I’m very grateful for these two,” Muschetto said. “I might be biased, but I think (Jimenez and Mao) are the best recruits in the whole entire class.”

Patrick Muschetto, one of Garden Grove PD’s newest officers, second from left, is sworn in with the rest of the class.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Shaylen Mao, one of Garden Grove PD’s newest officers, center, is sworn in with the rest of her class.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Patrick Muschetto, front center, stands with his classmates with their handguns out for inspection during Long Beach Police Academy’s Class of 91 Graduation Ceremony. Efrain Jimenez is third from left in the third row.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Efrain Jimenez, one of GGPD’s newest officers, center, with his classmates during graduation.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Long Beach Police Academy Class of 91 stands at attention during the graduation ceremony in Long Beach.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Garden Grove Police Chief Todd Elgin, left, congratulates new GGPD Officer Efrain Jimenez for receiving the Outstanding Recruit Award.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Garden Grove Police Chief Todd Elgin, left, presents new GGPD Officer Efrain Jimenez with the Outstanding Recruit Award.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Garden Grove Police Chief Todd Elgin presents new officer Patrick Muschetto with a certificate.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Garden Grove Police Chief Todd Elgin presents new officer Shaylen Mao with a certificate.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Garden Grove Police Chief Todd Elgin presents new officer Efrain Jimenez with a certificate.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Garden Grove PD’s newest officers have graduated from the Long Beach Police Academy. Efrain Jimenez, from left, Shaylen Mao, and Patrick Muschetto.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Garden Grove PD’s newest officers, center left, Efrain Jimenez, Shaylen Mao, and Patrick Muschetto, with GGPD personal including Chief Todd Elgin, second from right.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Bishop Gwendolyn Phillips Coates of the Long Beach PD gives the invocation at the start of the Long Beach Police Academy’s graduation ceremony.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia speaks to the Class of 91.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Long Beach Police Academy Class of 91 Class President Paige White gives her remarks near the conclusion of the graduation ceremony.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Long Beach Police Chief Robert Luna talks to the Class of 91 graduates.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

The Long Beach Police Honor Guard presents the colors at the start of the ceremony.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Recruits receive their badges from family members during the Long Beach Police Academy’s Class of 91 graduation ceremony.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC