The Madera Police Department’s Citizen Police Academy held its first graduation ceremony this week, and several residents who participated said they came away from the course with a better understanding of how law enforcement operates.
Through three-hour classes once a week, residents learned what police officers do while on the job.
“We did all sorts of things,” said Juan Prudente, 25, who is currently in the process of becoming a correctional officer. “We went to the shooting range for glocks, shotguns, and M-16 rifles, we did a test driving class in their vehicles, which was awesome, we did a complete crime scene scenario where we pulled fingerprints from a vehicle … we pretty much learned about everything they do.”
MPD Chief Steve Frazier said the course wasn’t just for those interested in a law enforcement career; instead, the academy was part of the department’s philosophical change to public transparency...