Tustin Police Department takes applications for Citizen’s Academy

By Elysse James

The Tustin Police Department is accepting applications for its newest Citizen’s Academy, a 17-week program that gives those who work or live in Tustin a glimpse into what it takes to be a police officer.

Residents get to know police officers and professional staff, learn about police tactics, tour the station, and learn about the issues facing law enforcement today.

Tustin PD Sgt. Luis Garcia of the gang enforcement team talks to a group of citizens attending Tustin Police Department’s Citizen’s Academy.
File photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

The program provides the students with insight into the working operations of the police department.  With instruction from both sworn and civilian personnel, the Citizen Academy instruction includes sections on the criminal justice system, traffic, patrol, firearms, use of force, crime scene investigation, weaponless defense, communications and dispatch, school resources officers, investigations, gangs, graffiti, professional standards, K9 units, the Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team, the Police Officer’s Association, and much more.

Tustin Officer Eric Kent with his K9 partner, Riggs, left, and Officer Rene Barraza with Bravo give a police dog demonstration in the parking lot of the Tustin PD during a Citizens Academy class on the K9 unit. File photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC

Academy students must be at least age 18, live or work in Tustin, have no felony convictions, and have no serious misdemeanor arrests within a year of submitting their application. Applications for the academy are available online and at the front counter of the Tustin Police Department at 300 Centennial Way. Once the application is submitted, applicants will be contacted for a brief interview.

Classes are held at the Tustin Police Department from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Thursdays starting Feb. 1 and lasting 16 weeks. The Citizen’s Academy is offered twice a year, organized by the Tustin Police Department’s Professional Standards Division.

Applications are online here.

Alma Penalosa of Tustin gets firsthand advice on firing a gun from Tustin PD Officer Mike Carter during Tustin PD Citizen’s Academy class at Evans Shooters World Firing Range in Orange.
File photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge OC