By Caleb Revill
Addy Rushing never really knew that she wanted to be a police officer when growing up in Paris. Now, she’s Bradford’s newest patrolwoman.
Rushing wasn’t sure about college, but a different opportunity presented itself when an officer she met in Paris reached out to her and asked if she would be interested in becoming a police officer.
After taking it into consideration – and talking to her father about it – she made the decision to attend the police academy in Cleveland.
“Starting out, it was mainly just the verbal judo and presenting yourself professionally,” Rushing said. “Then towards the end of it, they showed us more of the agility work of [the job], what we would see on a daily basis and what we could or could not do.”
After graduating from the academy, Rushing began work as a correctional officer in Weakley County. Five months later, she accepted a patrol position in South Fulton. A little over a year after that, she would begin work in Gleason, and finally start at her new department in Bradford in October 2020.
Rushing is the first person in her family to work in law enforcement. Understandably, there was some concern from her parents due to the dangerous nature of the work.
“Oh gosh, I’ve been in it for three years and my dad still calls me every day,” Rushing said chuckling. “Every day is dangerous to us, we have to treat it like that. But in the three years that I’ve done it, I probably haven’t been in much danger.”
Although she isn’t the first female police officer to serve in Bradford – that honor would go to a former officer who served in 2006 – she brings a valuable perspective to her department.
“Females in law enforcement experience a lot of obstacles that they have to get through,” Rushing said. “But if you have a department that accepts you and respects you as much as any other person, then females are very valuable in law enforcement.”
Rushing has really enjoyed working in Bradford so far. She’s enjoyed working with her team of fellow officers.
“My coworkers are really understanding and respectful,” Rushing said. “If we ever needed anything, nobody would hesitate to help. They’ve helped build my confidence even more than what I already had in the other three years that I served.”
Rushing gave some advice for people thinking about starting a career in law enforcement.
“There’s been a huge decrease in certified officers,” Rushing said. “We deal with stuff every day, but if you’re willing to do it, and if you’ve ever had a desire to do it, do it. This will probably be the biggest and most respectful family you can be in, and we will always have your back.”
She also said that it’s okay to be scared but advised to keep pushing by following one’s training and instincts.
Bradford Police Chief David Andrews added to Rushing’s advice.
“People do not really understand what police officers go through,” Andrews said. “You go home, you go over in your mind what you did that day or what somebody said…it’s every day that you carry it home with you.”
Andrews explained that it takes special people to be able to do well in police work, and that he was happy to have officers like Rushing on his team.
“It’s an important job, and it’s an honorable job,” Andrews said. “But it takes a toll.”