Jan. 22, 2007

LP residents get chance to learn about police dept.

By Ivan Raconteur
Staff Writer

For the second consecutive year, the Lester Prairie Police Department is taking city residents to school.

The Citizens Police Academy is an eight-week program that exposes residents, or those who work in the city, to some of the challenges that police officers face on a daily basis.

According to Lester Prairie Police Chief Bob Carlson, the goal of the program is to provide education and awareness to community members about what the police department is, what it does, and how it accomplishes its mission.

Carlson said the academy allows citizens an opportunity to interact with the officers who serve them on a one-to-one basis.

The academy also serves to dispel myths and rumors about the police profession by giving people firsthand instruction about what the police really do.

Classes include lectures, as well as hands-on training whenever possible.

The Lester Prairie Police Department is currently accepting applications for the 2007 Citizens Police Academy.

Classes will take place at the Lester Prairie High School media center from 6 to 8:30 p.m. each Thursday for eight weeks beginning Feb. 1.

To be considered, participants must be at least 18 years of age, and either live or work in Lester Prairie.

Class size is limited to 15 people.

Those interested should contact the Lester Prairie Police Department for an application at (320) 395-2100.

McLeod County to implement program

The citizens academy concept will expand to all of McLeod County in 2007.

McLeod County Sheriff Scott Rehmann said he is working on a joint program with Glencoe Police Chief Jeff Cummins that will cover the entire county.

Rehmann said that he hopes residents from all communities in the county will take part.

“This will give people a chance to see the different perspectives of law enforcement, from the local police departments and the county, and I think this will be a really good thing,” Rehmann commented.

“We all work on the same kinds of things, but from a slightly different angle,” he added.

The details are still being worked out, but the program is expected to take place in late summer or fall.

Want to sign up?

Participants must be at least 18 years old and must live or work in Lester Prairie.

Applilcations can be obtained from the Lester Prairie Police Department (320) 395-2100.

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