BEAVERCREEK — Beavercreek Police want to continue building their relationship with the community by having them take an in depth look into the legal system through its program called Citizen’s Police Academy.
With an open mind Cherie White joined Beavercreek’s Citizen’s Police Academy, to learn how the department, in the community she’s lived in for 35 years, operates.
Her main mission is to help bridge the gap between police and black residents.
“I wanted to be informed. I didn’t want to speculate. I didn’t want to go by a rumor about the police department. I wanted to form my own opinions.” said White. “Over the course of years there has been a very negative perception. Particularly as it relates to diversity and inclusion in Beavercreek and I want to work to change that narrative.”
While the academy launched its first class in 2001....community engagement officer, Mark Brown told NewsCenter7′s Ronnell Hunt, social unrest seen during the pandemic has caused them to adjust.
“If you follow what’s going on in the climate of the nation today. police and citizen relationships are so vital right now. we just thought it was important – even with COVID with some of the restrictions.” Brown said.
In Tom Hamilton’s case he wanted to be involved in the seven week course’s behind the scenes aspects.
“The Beavercreek police, especially getting in touch with the community is – I think it’s been a wonderful thing. I’ve seen it play out when we did have some of the protest in Beavercreek, how wonderfully the Beavercreek police handled it. Compared to what I’ve seen and heard from other jurisdictions.” Hamilton stated.
“We try to make it as interactive as we can. give them a broad range of the whole criminal justice system. we don’t want to just focus on law enforcement. we want to bring in judges, prosecutors, individual officers that have specialized assignments within the department and how all those mesh together.” said Brown.
By seeing how the system comes together in various aspects – Cherie White reiterated it is a step in the right direction.
“I think that they have done a very good job here recently of being very transparent about things and so when people have questions. instead of asking fellow citizens and forming their own opinions and coming up with their own ideas about things – they can come right here. They can talk to officers. they can talk to officer brown who is the community engagement officer and find out things they want to know. so therefore it changes that narrative that I think is so important.”
Beavercreek’s Citizen’s Police Academy students will finish up the academy with a graduation ceremony on November 11.
For general information, contact Academy Commander Officer Mark Brown at 937-426-1225 or visit the Citizen’s Police Academy website.
Cox Media Group