The Covington Police Department is offering citizens a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn the inner-workings of the Police Department through the Citizens Police Academy.
During the five-week program, citizens will learn about the structure of the Police Department, patrol functions and criminal investigations. Classes are a combination of lectures, demonstrations and interactive activities. Participants will complete a firearms course and will become familiar with Use of Force laws.
Covington Police Department Lieutenant Al Miller was one of the officers that started the Citizens Academy and sees it as a great opportunity for residents to become familiar with the people and tactics used to protect them.
“The goal of the Citizens Police Academy is to give a better understanding of the services provided by and the functions of the Covington Police Department,” Miller said. “We are trying to develop a nucleus of responsible, well-informed citizens and we feel like this is an excellent first step in that process.”
Bob Stafford, a Covington resident who participated in the inaugural Citizens Academy thought the return he received on the investment of his time was well worth it.
“The one word I have for this experience is ‘awesome.’ We went behind the scenes with the Police, Fire and Emergency 911 departments to see how they work together to keep our wonderful city safe,” Stafford said. “We made a lot of new friends in the process. Once you graduate, you will be so glad that you did.”
Police Chief Stacey Cotton points to current events and the heightened scrutiny over police tactics as a good reason to participate in the Citizens Academy.
“Now more than ever with the misinformation that is being discussed in the media about police tactics, the citizens academy is a great resource. Citizens can learn how police train, respond to community needs, and the issues officers face on a daily basis. It will give them an experience they won’t soon forget,” Cotton said.
The program will begin on March 5 and meet every Thursday from 6-9 p.m. for five weeks. The Academy is open to anyone 18-years-of-age and older and admission is free. Only 20 participants will be accepted and applications will be reviewed on a first come, first served basis.