Junior Police Academy cadets sought

Daleville Department of Public Safety Sgt. Ashley Paul

An opportunity to learn about the role of first responders from first responders is available in Daleville for the fourth consecutive year.

The Daleville Police Department is hosting the Fourth Annual Junior Police Academy for youth between the ages of 13 to 18 July 6 through July 17.

According to Daleville Department of Public Safety Police Sgt. Ashley Paul, the academy is a two-week intensive training program designed to introduce teens to the inside operations of the police, rescue and fire departments. Registration deadline is June 26.

The program is designed to engage the children in real-world scenarios and instruction on the different roles that a public safety officer takes in the community. It also allows them to get a realistic and hands on approach about how the public safety department fulfills its mission every day to keep our citizens safe.

The 70-hour program is offered free of charge to the attendees because of the generosity of community businesses and individuals, Paul said. The academy cadet shirts are being donated by the city of Daleville and the military-style pants for cadets are being donated by Assault Gear. Any person or business interested in donating bottled water, snacks or lunches for the academy is asked to contact the Daleville Department of Public Safety.

Paul is one of two school resource officers assigned to Daleville City Schools. He and School Resource Officer Michael Kiley are hosting the program which is designed to engage the youth in real-world scenarios and instruction on different roles first responders take in the community.

“The program helps build positive relationships between the young people and public safety officers. It also helps youth who are considering a career in law enforcement or as a first responder to make more informed choices about the field.

Applications for the program are available at the Daleville Department of Public Safety or at the Daleville City Hall. For more information, contact Paul or Kiley at (334) 598-4442.

During the academy, cadets will explore several areas of law enforcement to include criminal patrol, gun range safety, physical fitness, criminal investigations, emergency rescue and fire operations.

“The program will also introduce the cadets to representatives from organizations that work in and with the police department,” Paul said, citing the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency state troopers, air ambulance helicopters and Daleville’s Mayor Jayme Stayton and Director of Public Safety Chief Allen Medley.

The Ozark Police Department, the Dale and Houston County Sheriff’s Offices and Fort Rucker Military Police will take part in the academy, Paul said.

ALEA State Trooper Col. Charles Ward, a Dale County native, is the keynote speaker at the academy graduation ceremony July 17, Paul said. Ozark Police Chief Marlos Walker will teach a session on decision making and Ozark Police Officer Samuel Yoh, who was shot in the face while on duty Dec. 12, 2019, will speak with the academy attendees.

“The whole point is to foster a positive relationship between police and youth, something to encourage the kids to make positive life decisions,” Paul said as he talked about his first year coordinating the annual event. “This is a learning experience for the kids and I am looking forward to it.”

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