New police officer wears same badge number as grandfather

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SAGINAW, Mich. (WJRT) -- A new police officer in Saginaw, Michigan is set to hit the streets wearing the same badge number as his grandfather, who was a former police chief there.

The unique swearing in ceremony brings a historical perspective on police operations then and now.

When Charles Campbell was Saginaw's police chief, there were more than 200 officers in the department. Monday, his grandson joined the department that has fewer than 60.

Twenty-nine-year-old Brandon Jebb is Saginaw's newest police officer, after recently graduating from an area police academy.

Doing the honors of pinning his badge on was his mom, Shelley Jarabek, who worked for the police department as a civilian for 27 years. She retired in 2010.

“It is emotional, but it’s very exciting too,” she said.

“My start date was the same day as my mom's start date, Sept. 19,” Jebb said.

Jebb’s grandfather, Shelley's dad, was Saginaw's police chief from 1979 to 1983.

Mayor Dennis Browning was a Saginaw police officer, one of more than 200, when Campbell was chief. The country was coming out of a recession.

“The Saginaw Police Department went through nine years, nine years without hiring a new officer,” Browning said.

Decades later, Saginaw is now budgeted for 55 officers.

“It only moves me up to 53. I still have a lot of hiring to do, and we have more people going to retire,” said Current chief Bob Ruth.

Ruth has hired 20 police officers over the past two years and says having people like Jebb on the police force brings stability.

“They are not going anywhere. They are going to stay here and they care about the city of Saginaw, they care about the citizens, and that's what we need,” Ruth said.

Police work will be a lot different for Jebb than it was for his grandfather.

“It’s definitely a lot of pressure, people are always having your eyes on you, always a camera going,” he said.

He will wear badge number 109, the same as his grandfather.

Campbell died in 2010.

“It wasn't until after my grandfather had passed that I really decided I am going to go for it,” Jebb said.

“I know he is smiling down on Brandon and he is very proud,” Jarabek said.

Brandon's stepfather, Michael Jarabek, also worked for the Saginaw Police Department.

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