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US: First out trans police officer joins San Francisco’s force

Katie Dupere August 19, 2014

Officer Mikayla Connell became the first out transgender person to graduate from the San Francisco Police Academy last Friday.

According to news station KTVU, Connell was the elected president of her academy class and recieved two academic achievement awards upon graduating.

Connell talked to KTVU about being the first transgender person to graduate, saying: “It means you can’t screw up because you can’t ruin it for everyone coming behind you.”

“I know people, especially in the transgender community, are going to be watching me. I can’t let them down.”

Connell’s police career has been several years in the making. She first applied to be an officer 23 years ago, but chose to leave the academy to join the military and study law.

Connell, now 45 years old, is the oldest member of her class.

She said to the news station: “There aren’t that many transgender police officers, either female-to-male or male-to-female.

“And the more we have, I think, the better connection the department is going to have to the transgender community.”

Recent research in the UK found hundreds of police officers and civilian staff have been investigated for homophobic, racist and threatening messages on social media.

Watch Connell share her story with KTVU below:

More: Americas, Law, law enforcement, Mikayla Connell, police, police officer, San Francisco, San Francisco Police Academy, Transgender, US

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