MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) - Bibb County deputies are now officially sworn in under Sheriff David Davis.
More than 300 sheriff's office employees took their oaths of office Friday afternoon, split up into two different sessions.
"We decided that this year, we would just do them all at one time--or do them all in one day," says Davis. "We're doing it in two sessions."
Each time a new sheriff takes office, oaths must be re-taken to reflect duties under the new sheriff.
18-year veteran, Sgt. Christopher Dunn, who's being sworn in for the third time, explains what the oath means to him.
"It goes a little deep," says Dunn. "It has to do with your integrity, your character, what people think about you. It means a lot to me, because it talks about the person and not just the uniform."
"It's great to have them all together in one place at one time with their families," says Davis. "Some of the families and friends came, too. That's always an honor to have them come in and see their loved one get sworn in or be a part of this type of ceremony."
Sgt. Scott Crosby, a 16-year veteran on the force, is excited for new beginnings.
"I think it's a great thing," says Crosby. "We're starting off a whole new year with the department and now we're having a merge coming with the city, so it's going to be different."
"We may have to break it into maybe a couple or three sessions of swearing in," says Davis, with a laugh. "But that's our plan. Next year, when we absorb the Macon police officers in, they will become part of this great family of deputy sheriffs and share in the kinship of the office of sheriff through antiquity. We want to certainly welcome them into the fold."
Sheriff Davis also allowed the office's citizen employees to participate in taking the oath.
He says although they don't hold the same powers as deputies, they should still take pride in the same principles.