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JSO to hold Citizen's Police Academy this fall

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office will be offering its Citizen's Police Academy course this fall.

It's a way for the public to further understand the duties of an officer and make communication between JSO and the community even more transparent.

During the 12-week course taught by JSO employees, people will learn how each division in the agency operates, including specialized unites like the bomb squad, SWAT team and narcotics unit. They will also get to tour the Pre-Trial Detention Facility, Montgomery Correctional Center and the firing range.

Participants will get to partake in hands-on exercises, such as, hostage situations and "shoot don't shoot simulations," which will help them better understand a day in the life of an officer.

"Why do we approach the way we approach? Why do we speak the way we speak? We're doing this for a reason, obviously. That's the way we were trained. A lot of those trained that way so the Citizen's Academy allows individuals to come in, get trained, look at the background and knowledge. And to gain that knowledge as to why we do what we do," said JSO Public Information Officer Christian Hancock. 

After taking part in the program, participants will leave with a better understanding of the difficult challenges the person behind the badge faces every day, the Sheriff's Office said. 

The fall session is scheduled to begin Sept. 15 and will meet from 6-9 p.m. once a week.

The Sheriff's Office will be accepting application until Aug. 1. To sign up, visit jaxsheriff.org