The Police Departments of Indiana University Northwest and the City of Gary are collaborating to bring citizens together with their local law enforcement officials. The departments are providing two opportunities to attend a free 10-week Citizens Police Academy.
A morning session takes place on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to noon from January 9 through March 12 at the City of Gary’s Community Center, located on the first floor of the Gary Police Department at 555 Polk St. in Gary. An evening session will take place from 6 to 9 p.m. from January 12 through March 15 at the John W. Anderson Library Conference Center, located at the IU Northwest campus.
The Citizens Police Academy is designed to give local citizens and their community’s police officers an opportunity to learn more about each other and develop strong relationships between the departments and the neighborhoods they serve.
By providing citizens with a working knowledge of their local police departments and law-enforcement activities, officers from the IU Northwest and City of Gary Police Departments aim to help those whom they serve to make informed judgments about the departments and their activities. At the same time, the Academy serves to educate the police department about the issues and concerns of the community.
A community’s police departments often call on citizens for assistance in various projects. Graduates of a Citizens Police Academy, having gone through character evaluations and background checks, may be called on for assistance by the police department. Citizens often serve as valuable community resources for local officers.
Representatives of both departments will focus on a different area of police work each week, including such topics as the use of force, patrol procedures, criminal investigations, and the legal system. The instruction will include a combination of lectures, demonstrations, tours and hands-on activities, including:
- History of each department
- Criminal Justice System
- Criminal Investigations
- Use of Force
- Special Teams
- Crime Scene Processing
- Community Policing/Crime Prevention
- Legal Concepts
- Uniformed Patrol Procedures
Citizens who are at least 18 years old and who live or work in Gary are invited to apply for the free 10-week program. Prior to acceptance to the Academy, applicants will undergo a background check and may be asked to sit for a brief interview. The Academy is limited to 25 participants.
Although participants of the Citizens’ Police Academy receive training in numerous police-related subjects, the graduates are not prepared or encouraged to participate in any real police services.
To apply at the Gary Police Department, contact Commander K. Rice at (219) 881-7422 or firstname.lastname@example.org. To apply at the IU Police Department - Northwest, contact Brenda Holmes at (219) 980-6503. Applications can be picked up at both police departments.