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Applicants sought for Citizens’ Police Academy

By Staff | May 12, 2011

Those wanting to learn more about the Cape Coral Police Department have the opportunity to do so through the Citizens’ Police Academy.
The CCPD is accepting applications for the upcoming academy class, which will be held Wednesdays from 6:30-9:30 p.m., Sept. 14-Nov. 16. The Citizens’ Police Academy is a 10-week program that offers Cape residents an inside look at what the police department does and why.
“It’s a good program to meet as many as 30 different police officers and see what their particular jobs in the department are,” Cindy Naumann, the CCPD’s community outreach program coordinator, said.
The academy is free for Cape residents.
Applicants must be 20 years of age or older. There are no physical restrictions.
Areas covered include communications, SWAT, K-9, forensics, detectives, marine, traffic, crime prevention and more. Participants will meet personnel in training, get a tour of the 911 center and a stun gun demonstration, and learn about the weapons that Cape officers carry and when they use each.
“They will do some mock traffic stops,” Naumann said. “Mock scenarios in which they play the officer and they have to make some decisions.”
Participants will also go to the gun range and fire a weapon, as well as visit the driving range to test out a patrol vehicle and some police maneuvers.
Naumann said people seem to have the most fun at the ranges.
“They always love to see the K-9 unit and the SWAT team,” she added.
Testing out the DUI goggles while attempting some sobriety tests is typically a hit with participants also, along with the mock traffic stop scenarios.
“It is a good opportunity to kind of feel what goes through an officer’s mind when they make the stop,” Naumann said.
As of Thursday, there were 10 open spaces for the academy.
Between 25 and 35 applicants are selected to participate in each.
A background check is completed on each applicant.
According to Naumann, class participants can consist of relatives of law enforcement officers who want more information about what their loved ones do, to students that might be interested in a career as a Cape cop.
“But really it’s for anyone who wants to learn a little bit more about the police department,” she said.
The Citizens’ Police Academy is in its 13th year and it recently celebrated graduating its 500th participant. Graduates become part of the alumni group and are invited back each quarter for additional training or in-depth training.
“We usually have 50-70 that come back for each event,” Naumann said.
Applications can be found online at: www.capecops.com, or they can be picked up at Cape Coral Police Headquarters, at 1100 Cultural Park Blvd.
Applications must be returned to the police department by June 8.