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Blockwatch Beat: Your Westside resource
Blockwatches are better off if they have members that are well informed and well educated in the way the city and the police department work.
We all know and love our community liaison officers but did you know that there are dozens of different divisions in the Columbus Division of Police?
There is an organization that teaches the average citizen all about our police department. It’s called the Citizen’s Police Academy (CPA).
Westsiders are lucky enough to have the main meeting place for the CPA right here on the Hilltop at the Columbus Police Academy, 1000 N. Hague Ave.
The next Citizen's Police Academy starts on Monday, Sept. 13. Applicants that are accepted will meet for three hours each Monday evening for nine weeks.
You will get a behind the scenes look at over a dozen places the general public never sees, including the crime lab, the morgue, the communications center, booking and ID, and the property and evidence warehouse. You’ll also learn directly from the detectives, sergeants, and officers that work in each of the dozens of departments.
As part of the CPA, you will be allowed to do a ride-along to see what it’s really like on the streets.
I know this sounds a bit like a summer camp brochure, but you’ll also make great friendships with your fellow students and have the opportunity to join the alumni association, where you can continue to learn from the best police force in the country.
Classes are only offered twice each year and they fill up fast so don’t wait.
The deadline for registration is Aug. 30.
This is a great resource for anyone that wants to be better educated for their blockwatch or for anyone that simply wants to learn more about our police department.
You can print out your application by going to: http://www.columbuspolice.org/CommunityInteraction/CitizensAcademy.html
You can learn more by checking out the alumni association at: http://www.cpaaa-columbus.org or by contacting officer Betty Schwab at 645-4800, ext. 1114.
Jay McCallister is coordinator of the Great Western Blockwatch and Civic Association.
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