Gainesville Police Department representatives recently announced the beginning of another Citizen Police Academy, set to begin Tuesday, Feb. 12, at the city public safety building, 201 Santa Fe St. in Gainesville.
The academy is a free 11-week program designed to give the participants a working knowledge of the Gainesville Police Department. It consists of a series of interactive classes held Tuesdays from 6 to 9 p.m. There is no cost to anyone who enrolls, though a background check will also be conducted on each applicant.
The academy’s purpose is to partner the police department with members of the public in identifying problems and solutions to the crime issues that are affecting the community. The program is part of a biannual routine the city department conducts as a method of helping public participants understand the job of a police officer.
“It makes them better understand what officers are doing when they see them around town working,” Gainesville Police Department Capt. Mark Brazelton said in 2012. “It gives them a better idea of what they’re looking at. We try to cover everything from the hiring process to all the different facets of law enforcement that are performed by their police officers.”
Class participants will learn about police patrol, communications, gang awareness, crime scene investigation, Texas law, firearms, family violence, narcotics investigation and crime prevention.
“It gives a realistic look of law enforcement and the Gainesville Police Department versus the TV aspect that’s seen,” Brazelton added. “Crimes aren’t solved in an hour, like on CSI. You get better perspective of that in the academy.”
Potential students must be 18 years of age or older, have a good standing in the community and either reside or work in Cooke County.
For applications call (940) 668 4760. Applications are also available at the police department’s front desk.