June 18, 2014 10:54:24 AM
Starkville police Chief Frank Nichols was among 220 law enforcement agents to graduate Friday from the FBI National Academy Program in Quantico, Va.
While at the academy, Nichols earned 17 graduate hours from the University of Virginia, completed the 6.1-mile Yellow Brick Road obstacle course and won first place in the annual bench press contest.
Nichols, a 22-year veteran of Starkville Police Department, was named police chief in February. Shortly after his promotion, the board of aldermen granted him leave to complete FBI training.
Ward 1 Alderman Ben Carver publicly commended Assistant Chief Chris Thomas Tuesday for leading the department in Nichols' absence.
The National Academy offers 10 weeks of advanced investigative, management and fitness training for officers with proven records within their respective agencies, according to a SPD press release.
Since 1935, almost 50,000 officers have graduated the FBI National Academy, and almost 30,000 remain in active duty with various law enforcement agencies.
Carl Smith covers Starkville and Oktibbeha County for The Dispatch. Follow him on Twitter @StarkDispatch
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