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Walkin’ the beat: Registration open for Citizens Police Academy

HUNTSVILLE – There are a couple of weeks left to sign up for the Huntsville Police Department’s Citizens Police Academy. The nine-week, volunteer program is designed to inform residents about how the department operates, and to provide an opportunity to interact with local law enforcement.

The popularity of television shows such as “NCIS,” “Cops” and “CSI” is because they attempt to put citizens into the shoes of law enforcement officers on the streets of any city.

But police work is not a television show – it is real life – and HPD wants the community to better understand Huntsville’s law enforcement. The department also wants to provide firsthand information on how it operates.

The Citizens Police Academy is not an offer of employment, but a volunteer program to educate members of our community on the culture of police work and the law enforcement organization.

It is a nine-week program that involves classroom and interactive instruction. No one will be put in any danger during the classes.

During the 2023 Citizen Academy, students will meet every Tuesday 6-9 p.m. from May 2 to July 5.

Topics covered in Citizens Police Academy include:

  • Structure of the Huntsville Police Department
  • Civil and criminal law
  • Community policing
  • Precinct operation
  • Communications such as the 911 Center
  • K-9 units and their uses
  • Special Weapons and Tactics known as SWAT
  • Domestic violence
  • Narcotics and gangs

Participants must be at least 19 years of age; be a resident, college student or business owner in the city of Huntsville; have no prior felony convictions, outstanding warrants or pending criminal cases.

Cameras, recording devices and weapons (regardless of whether you have a pistol permit) are prohibited. Also, business casual attire is mandatory with a neat and clean appearance.

Click here to fill out the application. Participation is limited to 40 people and will be filled, if accepted, on a first-come basis.

For more information, contact the Huntsville Police Academy at 256-746-4409.

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