HANFORD — Over the next several months, the Sentinel will feature a series on former Hanford Police Department Explorers and what they are doing now.
Cotta started the HPD Explorer program in 2009 at the age of 14 and remained with the program until 2014.
After leaving the program, Cotta was sponsored by the Hanford Police Department to become a cadet in the police academy and was subsequently hired by the department in 2014.
Prior to joining the Explorer program, Cotta said he always had an interest in law enforcement as a possible career.
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Cotta said the program really opened his eyes and provided invaluable hands-on experience. He said the scenarios the explorers were trained for were real life situations.
He said having that experience and training has made him a well-rounded officer able to handle any situation.
“I wouldn’t be where I am today without the program,” Cotta said.
Cotta has been able to become a detective with HPD and said he enjoys his job helping people and getting to do something different every day.
“It’s nice to go out and do good,” he said.