Northeast Tarrant

Colleyville taking applications for Citizens Police Academy

Colleyville’s Citizen Police Academy is accepting applications for the 2014 class.

Applications, which are available via the Colleyville Justice Center or the city’s website, are due by Jan. 15.

The 12-week class gives participants a hands-on experience of police methods including traffic enforcement, crime scene investigation, SWAT and bomb squad units.

“It allows us to provide an opportunity to the residents of Colleyville to peek behind the curtain,” Police Chief Michael Holder said. “It puts them in the shoes of an officer.”

Police department members teach some of the program and outside law enforcement officials are brought in for some weeks. Academy members get to participate in mock traffic stops and other scenarios.

Classes run from Jan. 30 to April 24 and meet from 7-10 p.m. on Thursdays.

Holder said he’s seen people of all ages attend.

“In our last class we had everything from a high school student to retirees and everything in between,” he said. “It’s shown to be really appealing to all segments of our city, which is really encouraging to me.”

The academy offers a way to get more involved with the community’s safety. Some participants take additional training to join the city’s Citizens on Patrol group, some volunteer at the department and some join the academy’s alumni association, which aids the police department.

“The vast majority of them stay connected in some way,” Holder said about academy students.

Steve McDaniel, Colleyville Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association president, signed up when a detective told him about the program.

“It’s an opportunity to give back, so to speak, to your officers that are out there to protect you,” he said. “I would recommend it to anybody.”