KINGSTON, R.I. – Oct. 11, 2021 – The University of Rhode Island Police Department will hold its 5th annual Citizens Police Academy, beginning Oct. 20. The nine-week class runs through the spring semester and will enable participants to get a feel for various aspects of police work. The academy is part of the URI Police Department’s community policing efforts and aims to increase communication between the police department and the community through education.
The courses are designed to move quickly and include interesting information and many classes consist of practical, hands-on training. A ride-along with an on-duty URI police officer will be available during the program. Topics that will be discussed include criminal investigations, DUI Law (Driving Under the Influence), patrol procedures, K-9 apprehension, and crime scene forensics. The course includes a practical skills day at the Cranston Police Training Academy as well as a visit to the Rhode Island State Crime Laboratory, which is located on the Kingston Campus.
Says URI Police Sgt. Erica Viera, “I look forward to the opportunity to run this academy each year. It is a lot of work to pull together, but it is important for us to be involved with the community – and for the community to have the opportunity to better understand what we do. Plus, it is a lot of fun for everyone involved.”
Applications are now open to URI students, faculty, staff and members of the public but space is limited. Applicants will be selected after a background screening which may include university conduct screening, criminal history check, personal reference check and interview.
The schedule of classes, topics and speakers is:
- Oct. 20: Introduction to the URI Police Department, Police Chief Michael Jagoda, Capt. Michael Chalek, Sgt. Erica Vieira
- Oct. 27: Criminal Investigations and Fingerprinting, Lt. Paul Ricci, Det. Mark Brasil, Officer Thomas Lackie
- Nov. 3: Driving Under the Influence, Det. Brasil, Officers Nicole Wagner, John Tomasso and Jason Lewis
- Nov. 10: Fatal Vision Goggles and Alcohol Awareness, Officers Wagner, Tomasso and Brandon Teixeira
- Nov. 17: Bomb Making Materials Awareness and K-9 Demonstration, State Fire Marshal Bruce Quinn, Sgt. Vieira, Officers Paul Wells and Robert Kenyon, K-9s Figaro, Taz and Phender
- Dec. 1: Practical Skills Day including firearms training simulator, Sgt. Vieira, Det. Brasil and Officer Teixeira
- Feb. 9: Rhode Island State Crime Laboratory, Director Dennis Hilliard, Sgt. Vieira, Officer Wagner
- Feb. 16: Mock Crime Scene and K9 Apprehension, Sgt. Vieira, Sgt. Thomas Quaratella and Officers Wells and Wagner
- Feb. 23: URI’s Public Safety Partners and Graduation, Members of the Rhode Island State Police and Narragansett and South Kingstown Policer Departments