Wednesday, Nov. 6, Rockford Mayor Larry Morrissey (I) and Rockford Police Chief Chet Epperson honored 14 citizens who graduated from the Citizens’ Police Academy.
The 14 graduates were Austin Bartlet, Joan Gitchel, Roger Gorman, Tom Howarth, Cathy Johnson, Max Keopraseuth, Charles Milgrim Jr., Ethan Pease, Rose Sirois, Nancy Smith, Jake Swenson, Heather Tucker and Joann VanderHeyden.
For seven weeks, these citizens spent two hours each Wednesday evening attending training sessions focused on educating citizens about the value of engagement in the public safety process. The citizens learned about police-related topics including Field and Investigative Services Bureau operations, 911 Center operations, community policing, crime prevention, drug and gang awareness, crime analysis, criminal laws and city ordinances, identity theft, and organizing and maintaining a neighborhood watch group.
This is the 10th class to graduate from Rockford’s Citizens’ Police Academy. The program was designed to inform and educate citizens who will return to their neighborhoods to organize, encourage and mobilize others to partner with the police to reduce crime in Rockford. The Citizens Police Academy is a recommended component for those citizens wishing to participate in the Citizens Assisting Police Volunteer Program.
From the Dec. 4-10, 2013, issue