After several years on hiatus, the Watertown Police Department’s Citizens Police Academy is back, and residents can sign up now.
Classes will begin on Oct. 26, and will be held each Wednesday for seven weeks from 6:30-9:30 p.m.
Watertown Police Chief Michael Lawn brought back the Citizens Police Academy as part of the WPD’s community policing effort.
“It was a very successful program. People really enjoyed it,” Lawn said. “And with all that’s going on in policing today I figured this is a good time to bring it back.”
The aim of the academy is to familiarize residents with the operations of the Watertown Police Department. Another goal of the citizens academy is to increase citizen-police interaction and cooperation, Lawn said.
“The class get to really look around the Police Station, and they get to know a lot of officers, too,” Lawn said.
When it was offered in the past, the academy was popular, and a few of the graduates even went on to become members of the Watertown Police Department, said Watertown Police Capt. Raymond DuPuis.
He added that people should not be turned off by the three-hour commitment.
“When it was over people said, ‘what am I going to do with my Wednesday nights now,” DuPuis said.
Each session will cover one or more topics related to policing and law enforcement, including: the law, patrol operations, use of force training, de-escalation techniques, arrest procedures, accident and criminal investigations, substance use disorder, crime preventions, community policing and more.
There is no fee, and police only request that participants come ready to be involved in the discussions and demonstrations. Applicants must be 18 years of age or older.
To sign up, click here: watertownpd.org/2016/09/citizen-police-academy