Opelika Police Department's Citizens Academy underway

OPELIKA, AL (WTVM) - The first night of the Opelika Police Department's Citizens Academy was held Thursday.

Police say the goal is to inform the public on what goes on behind closed doors.

"To separate the myth from the fact is the goal," says  Opelika Police Captain Bobby Kilgore.

The eight-week-program will include simulation classes where police officers put you in situations where you have to make split-second decisions just like law enforcement make when responding to calls.

Next week during a patrol class, officers will discuss the life of a cop, what happens on a daily basis, what they do the most of, and some of the dangers and rewards of being an officer.

Locals say they are eager to become more aware of what the police department does daily and how to properly handle a firearm.

The academy started back up in 2016 and has a strong alumni group that supports officers by bringing snacks or water to who's working a scene for a period of time and to the officers who work football games on Friday nights.

"If we don't have the full trust and confidence in citizens we serve, then we've got nothing," Kilgore says. "We work very hard to keep that confidence in our citizens."

Anyone interested can sign up for the next class by calling the police department at (334) 755-5200.

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