The Ridgecrest Police Department welcomed its newest officer Monday during a swearing in ceremony at the police station.

Officer Laura Loredo was sworn in by City Clerk Ricca Charlon while surrounded by her children and family.

"We would like to welcome you to our law enforcement family," said acting Police Chief Jed McLaughlin.

Loredo is was born in Los Angeles, and graduated from Tehachapi High School in 2006. She plans to attend Union University to obtain her bachelor's degree in criminal justice.

Loredo's law enforcement career was spent largely within Kern County. She was a Kern County Sheriff's Explorer in 2006 and was hired by the sheriff’s department in 2007. She became a KCSO detention deputy in 2008.

She graduated from the Police Academy in Hanford in 2016.

McLaughlin thanked Loredo's family for attending.

"I would especially like to thank Laura’s family and friends for coming today and supporting her," McLaughlin said. "She will need your continued support throughout her career. Law enforcement has many demands both on and off-duty and the hours can be demanding."