Police recruit dies after medical emergency at FSCJ training academy

Tony Alexander Cephas, 43, started training March 18

By Nick Jones - Digital producer

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A Jacksonville police recruit was rushed to the hospital during a training exercise Thursday and later died, according to the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office.

The recruit was identified as Tony Alexander Cephas, 43. According to Director Ron Lendvay, Cephas suffered a medical emergency during training at the police academy at the Florida State College at Jacksonville North Campus.

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Cephas and his class of recruits started at the academy March 18, Lendvay said. They had been exercising on Thursday for about 15 minutes when they were given a water break.

During the break, an instructor noticed something was wrong and a paramedic determined Cephas should be taken to a hospital. Despite life-saving efforts, he died.

The cause of death was not immediately clear. Lendvay said Cephas had military experience and did well in his physical training since starting at the academy.

"Cephas is survived by his wife and two children," Lendvay said. "Our full support and prayers are with them at this most difficult time."

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