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It’s the stuff childhood dreams are made of: your favourite fictional California Highway patrolman, Erik Estrada — a.k.a. Officer Frank Poncherello, a.k.a. Ponch — is now a police officer in real life. The actor announced on Twitter that he is now patrolling the streets of St. Anthony, Idaho, along with a photo of him looking super-fly in his navy uniform. And what completed the picture? He was leaning against a white motorcycle.

Um, anyone else wondering how he looks EXACTLY THE SAME as his CHiPs days?

CP Images
CP Images

The dad of four is also a spokesperson for the Safe Surfin’ Foundation, which aims to inform parents, teachers and kids about Internet safety. Estrada’s role as a reserve officer will have him focusing his efforts on protecting children from online predators, reports Us Weekly.

“Education is the best protection, especially on the internet,” Estrada said, following his induction on Tuesday by Mayor Neils Thueson.

His new gig comes months after he reached out to the St. Anthony PD on behalf of the organization and Estrada, who grew up wanting to be a police officer, is looking forward to helping the town.

“It’s a small community and they have a need for what we want to do and they will allow us to do it and with their help we can do it,” he said. And the Chief of Police, Terry Harris, is thrilled with what Estrada will bring to their town.

“As a community it is really hard to imagine, I mean come into a small community in Idaho and have somebody of his stature and notoriety here is,” said Harris. “I’m just flabbergasted that he was even willing to come here and do it.”

This marks Estrada’s third time joining a police force. In 2008, he worked as a reserve officer in Muncie, Indiana, covering the midnight shift three times a week. The following year, he was made a full-time deputy sheriff in Bedford, Virginia.

Now if Officer Jon Baker, er, Larry Wilcox could join him, we’d be in feathered and fabulous heaven.

CP Images
CP Images