Two police officers rise above more than 230 of their peers to become the newest full-time guardians of the law in Manchester.

Officers Victoria Raub and Gavin Reilly were sworn in by Mayor Kenneth Palmer on May 1, during ceremonies in the Municipal Complex Civic Center. Both completed training in the 36th Special Class II graduating class of the Ocean Counth Police Academy in Waretown.

Reilly, 23, of Toms River, has previous experience in Manchester as a Class II Special Officer, holding the spot since last November. Township spokesman Gregory Kiryakakis points out that Reilly landed on the Dean's List in each of his semesters at Ocean County College and Kean University.

Raub, 26, served on the Long Beach and Evesham forces. She attended Ocean County College, gaining acceptance to the Phi Theta Kappa honor society, and earned her Baccalaureate in Criminal Justice from Stockton University in 2012. Kyriakakis added that Raub earned plaudits as a standout in athletics as well as academics.

Raub's next 12 weeks will be spent in the Field Training and Evaluation program, under the guidance of veteran officers. Reilly completed the program in 2016.

Prospective recruits underwent physical agility training in January 2016 at Manchester Township High School with a rigorous regimen of pull-ups, push-ups, sit-ups, squat thrusts, and a one-mile run.

Applicants who cleared the agility test were then required to demonstrate boxing and self-defense expertise. Those who succeeded underwent written exams. The top scorers took part in interviews with the Oral Board. Those still under consideration then were given extensive background checks, and medical, psychological and drug tests.

"We strive to select the absolute best Officers, upstanding individuals who have proven that they are capable of proudly serving our Department and the community," Chief Lisa Parker said in prepared comments. "The public can rest assured that only a select few exemplary candidates successfully complete our intensive hiring process."

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