Reflections on Police Academy - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

By Crystal Oko

Reflections on Police Academy

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ROCHESTER, MN (FOX 47) -- This week of Citizen's Police Academy was the last.

Citizens put on their graduation cap, and reflected on the past eight weeks and why they were there.

It's been a fun-filled, informational eight weeks.

From the gun range, to crime scene investigation, to learning about the K-9 unit, and a trip to court - the past eight weeks have been an eye-opening experience for those in Police Academy.

This week was graduation, and it was time to turn the attention from the instructors to the students.

Jason Williamson, a Police Academy participant, says, "On any given day we could have a situation that could arise that law enforcement could be included in. And having them be able to understand what they do on a regular basis and in turn I understand the things they have going on."

Jason Williamson works security at Target. Jared Holloran works at a bank downtown, but has his own personal reasons for attending.

Jared Holloran, a participant, says, "I'm kind of nosy by nature and I was always kind of curious to see what they do all day everyday. I get the crime watch at the bank everyday so I kind of see the volume of calls they get and the things they do."

Cindy Davis has lived in her neighborhood for 34 years and has been active in her neighborhood watch program for 3.

Cindy Davis says, "It's been very, very rewarding to our neighborhood."

Mother and daughter team, Sharon Blomberg and Tanya Johnson, each have their own reasons for attending.

Sharon Blomberg says, "I have a small business downtown. I want to protect them against counterfeit money, whatever and then I also work at a well-known clinic in town and it helps. We do have all types of people walking through the clinic."

Tanya Johnson says, "I have teenage children and I wanted to learn more about the gangs and gang violence and drug use and abuse."

Citizen's Police Academy organizer, Darrel Hildebrandt of the Crime Prevention Unit, says it takes every citizen to make a city safe.

Darrel Hildebrandt says, "We encourage the public to get involved with the police department. We need their eyes and ears we need their help in order to solve the crimes."

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