LIHU‘E – The Kaua‘i Police Department is opening a Citizens Police Academy program designed to give residents a hands-on look into the department, as well as enhance police and community relations. It is the first such academy for civilians on Kaua‘i.
“The Citizens Police Academy is consistent with our mission to bring greater transparency to the department and build a stronger relationship with our community,” said Kaua‘i Police Chief Darryl Perry. “While the program is modeled after a police academy, it is not intended to be a citizens patrol group or an offer of employment. It simply gives people a better understanding of the demands and challenges of police work, and the culture of law enforcement.”
The 13-week program is set to begin on July 11, and combines both classroom and field instruction aimed at giving participants a first-hand look at the role of a police officer. Most classes will be held at KPD headquarters in Lihu‘e, but will also include a visit to the Kipu Pistol Range and a police ride-along.
Weekly sessions will focus on various topics, including an overview of law enforcement and criminal justice, firearms, crime scenes, domestic violence disputes, special units and community policing.
The Office of the Prosecuting Attorney will assist KPD by providing Academy instruction on the criminal justice system.
“Knowledge is power, and community involvement is one of the most effective tools in preventing, combating, and prosecuting crime on our island” Prosecuting Attorney Shaylene Iseri-Carvalho said. “We’re proud to partner with the Kaua‘i Police Department in educating and empowering the community through this innovative program.”
Applications for the academy are now available at Ka Hale Maka‘i o Kaua‘i, Lihu‘e Headquarters at 3990 Ka‘ana Street, Suite 200 or online at www.kauai.gov/police.
Academy hopefuls must be Kaua‘i residents at least 18 years of age with a valid driver’s license who have not been convicted of a felony, DUI, domestic violence offense or petty misdemeanor within the past five years.
Dedication is also required, as participants must attend at least 11 of the 13 courses in order to graduate from the academy in early October. There is no fee for the program and registration is ongoing, but space is limited.
“We created the Citizens Police Academy in hopes of bringing the police department and the community closer together. We want to create a positive dialogue with interested members of our community in an interactive setting,” added Deputy Police Chief Michael Contrades. “And we intend on this being the first of many more classes to come.”
For more information on the Citizens Police Academy, including a course schedule, visit www.kauai.gov/police or call Lt. Paul Applegate at 241-1606.