The Doña Ana County Sheriff’s Department is taking applications for its winter Citizens Police Academy, which will take place every Saturday for six weeks beginning Jan. 5, 2013. Classes will be held from 8 a.m. to noon at 845 N. Motel Blvd.
The academy follows a recent rebirth of the program, which graduated nearly 50 members in 2012.
To be considered, each applicant must be 18 years of age or older, a resident of Doña Ana County, and have a valid driver’s license or photo ID. Because of the sensitive nature of police work, a brief background check will be performed on all applicants. Applicants must not have any prior felony convictions and no misdemeanor arrests within the last three years.
The academy will take class members through various divisions of the department in an effort to strengthen community partnerships through awareness, according to Sheriff Todd Garrison.
Citizen’s Academy classes are interactive, giving participants hands-on knowledge of how sheriff’s deputies are trained to handle real-life situations. Class members will examine traffic enforcement, understand the use of force (including the use of deadly force) observe K-9 demonstrations and presentations by the Special Response Team, bomb squad, and Animal Control. Several field trips are included in the academy, including a tour of the Mesilla Valley Regional Dispatch Authority and the Doña Ana County Detention Center.
The winter Citizen’s Academy is free of charge and runs Jan. 5 through Feb. 9, 2012. Applications can be downloaded online at www.donaanacounty.org/sheriff, and are also available at the Doña Ana County Sheriff’s Department, 845 N. Motel Blvd., in Las Cruces. The deadline to apply is Dec. 28, 2012, and class size is limited to 25 people.