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Citizens Police Academy begins

The first-ever Citizens Police Academy session got under way on Thursday at the Demopolis Police Department.

The eight-week program is supervised by police chief Tommie Reese and is geared towards showing the public how the police department works and other information about police work.

In the first session, the 14 participants were greeted with an introduction to the course by Reese and Demopolis mayor Mike Grayson.

DPD training officer Bobby Howerton then introduced Sgt. Monica Oliver, who reviewed the history of the Demopolis Police Department with a PowerPoint presentation.

Howerton then reviewed the recruitment and selection process for applicants to the department and the required training that officers must go through.

The session closed with Cpl. Wayne Hosea of the Alabama State Troopers giving a PowerPoint presentation showing the officers’ training given at the Police Academy in Selma, where he has served as a trainer for more than two years.

Reese was pleased with the first session and said that there was already a waiting list for the next session, which will begin soon after the first one ends in July.

“I think it went really well,” he said. “I was very impressed with the turnout, and I was very impressed with the participants. They asked some questions and gave some feedback. I think it turned out well.

“For those who complete the course, we are hoping to be able to become alumni of the Citizens Academy and come back and give input and become more involved with the police department.”

Other classes will discuss self-defense, criminal investigations, narcotics, the school resource officer, accident investigations, internal affairs, the K-9 unit, honor guard and the relationship between the police department and attorneys.

The Citizens Police Academy is scheduled to meet every Thursday night at 6 p.m. at the Demopolis Police Department. For more information or to register for the next session, call the Demopolis Police Department at (334) 289-3073.