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City accepting applications for next Citizens’ Academy

The Bainbridge Island Police Department is accepting applications for the next Citizens’ Academy.

The 10-week program gives residents an inside view of the police department and the everyday work of the island's police officers, from traffic enforcement, narcotics and criminal law, to defensive tactics and investigations.

The Citizens’ Academy was established to help citizens understand what law enforcement officers do.

“This is a great opportunity for people to get to know the Bainbridge Island Police Department’s officers and staff on a more personal level, and for the department to create connections within the community they serve,” said Bainbridge Island Police Officer Carla Sias, the coordinator of the academy.

Participants learn in a classroom setting, but also have the opportunity to ride along with an on-duty patrol officer, as well as attend tours of the 911 dispatch center, the county coroner’s Office and the Kitsap County Jail. Individuals from other agencies in Kitsap County will also help instruct the classes.

Department officials note there is no educational credit for the program, and the intended purpose is not to prepare people for a career in law enforcement, but simply to provide insight into the workings of public safety.

The 2013 program begins Tuesday, Feb. 12 and runs through April 16.

Classes are held from 7 to 9 p.m. Tuesday nights, with two optional Saturday sessions.

Applicants must be 18 years old, be willing to make a 10-week commitment, and will be subject to a criminal background check.

Applications are available on the city’s website or in person from the police department and will be accepted from now until Feb. 5.

Class size is limited to 20 participants.

For more information, contact the police department at 842-5211.

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