Citizen Police Academy begins Sept. 22

By Gus Bode

Officers heading the annual Citizen’s Police Academy sessions always look to de-mystify police work, said officer Randy Mathis, coordinator of the academy for the Carbondale Police Department.

After applying and going through a brief background check, participants attend sessions every Tuesday from Sept. 22 until Dec.’ 15, when the joint departments will host a graduation ceremony for participants.

The Academy is sponsored by the Police Department and SIU Campus Safety and gives civilians a greater understanding about the practice, policy and procedures of police work, said Mathis.


‘Sometimes people may think about officers ‘Well, he was very impersonal,” he said. ‘Sometimes we have a way of dealing with situations ‘hellip; and sometimes that can be misconstrued.’

The sessions will include hands-on demonstrations such as a mock crime scene, where participants will use various police tools to gather evidence and crack the case, Mathis said.

Officer Scott Miller, coordinator of Campus Safety’s involvement in the Academy, said the turnout for the sessions is cosmopolitan with criminal justice majors, law enforcement majors from SIU and John A. Logan and older citizens who are just interested in understanding police work.

‘Any time that you can go out there and bolster the relationship between the police department and the community, I think you’ll see a positive result of that,’ said Miller.

The Academy is accepting applications, available on the both the university and Carbondale Police Department web sites.