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Lathrop Junior Police Academy impresses
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River Islands Technology sixth grader Sydney Ladrido, 11, is convinced she wants to either be a surgeon or a police officer after going through two weeks of Lathrop Police Junior Police Academy.
The pre-teen knows she wants to do something with her life that will be devoted to helping others.
As for the academy she said, “We got to do new things every day and got a tour around the county jail and even saw a few of the inmates.”
Asked about police officers in general and how they are often put down by members of the public, she had a strong reaction saying, “I personally think they are very important.  I don’t understand that negative attitude.  It would be chaos without them.”  
Having met both firefighters and police officers, she said she and the 19 other cadets learned a lot, worked hard and did fun things as well.  
Hesitating, she revealed her dream of dreams in wanting to attend Stanford University some day and become an ophthalmologist to help others with eye problems.
Sydney had been selected to serve as master of ceremonies with the DARE drug program at her school in May and was also the winner of the essay contest.
Her mother Meredith said her daughter would come home every day from the Junior Police Academy with a good story to share with the family about her experiences.  
“She was excited about the next day, too, and was sad when the academy was up,” she said.
The students also visited the Lathrop Fire Station where they learned CPR as well as the Heimlich Maneuver technique to save a person who is choking, spent time on the river on a fire rescue boat, performed high risk traffic stops, watched canine demonstrations, put out live fires, visited the county jail and the sheriff’s dispatch center.
Deputy Jefferson Dominguez said that she was definitely a joy to work with and we look forward to her and the other cadets to come back next year.

To contact Glenn Kahl, email