The San Antonio Police Department is holding its annual "Camo to Cop" recruitment events at several military bases.
Eyewitness News stopped by Fort Sam Houston for the first of four events this week. Officer Michael Garza said the department is interested in recruiting military members who are about to retire or will soon transition out of service.
"They bring in the values we're looking for. Leadership, service, integrity, fairness and personal courage. They also have communication skills that we're looking for as well. They're going to be put in stressful situations, stressful environments," said Garza.
Another recruiting officer said the transition from military life to the police force is smooth. He spoke from firsthand experience. Higgins was a master sergeant in the U.S. Air Force and joined SAPD after his service.
"Anyone who's gone through military basic training will have seen the type of environment they're going to go through at the academy," said Higgins. "Transitioning from the military into the department is so easy. I don't know why you would do anything else."
Garza can also, speak from his own experience. He came from a military family and saw the transition to law enforcement. His grandfather transitioned from the Navy to SAPD and became a detective. Garza followed his footsteps.
"I've been in the reserve for 17 years and the military gave me the physical and mental toughness to succeed throughout the academy and the city of San Antonio," said Garza.
SAPD is looking to hire 140 officers. If you missed today's event, there's three more this week:
- November 15th, 511 Tactical located at 15693 San Pedro Avenue
- November 16th, Lackland Air Force Base Main Exchange located at 2180 Reese Street
- November 17th, Randolph Air Force Base located at 555 F. Street West