Citizens' Police Academy
The Paducah Police Department's Citizens' Police Academy (CPA) is a free program for citizens 18 years of age or older. It focuses on building a strong partnership between the police department and the community. The Paducah Police Department also offers a Junior Citizens' Police Academy for teens ages 13 to 18 (see below).
Since its inception in March 2002, the CPA has graduated 26 classes of approximately 400 citizens. It is taught once a year over six consecutive weeks. Class size is limited to approximately 25 participants. The program is for citizens who are at least 18 years of age and live in Paducah, McCracken County, or the surrounding area. All applicants are subject to a criminal background check before acceptance. Upon graduation, participants are encouraged to join the Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS).
CPA attendees are exposed to some of the same training that police officers receive and witness presentations from the department’s specialized units including the Drug Unit, SWAT, K-9, and the Bomb Squad. They also participate in a mock traffic stops, investigations, and simulations. The classes expose citizens to several current law enforcement issues and the latest Paducah Police Department procedures. Participants are encouraged to schedule ride-a-longs with patrol officers.
Registration has closed for Class #27. The class runs each Thursday from February 8 through March 14, 2024, from 6 until 9 p.m. at the Police Department.
Contact: Community Engagement Officer Blake Quinn
270-444-8548 (option 6)
Junior Citizens' Police Academy (JCPA)
The Paducah Police Department offers a Junior Citizens' Police Academy (JCPA) for Paducah and McCracken County youth ages 13 to 18 who may be interested in law enforcement as a career. The JCPA meets during the summer in a day-camp style format. It meets for one week, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. The program is free for participants and is open to a maximum of 24 participants. Lunch is provided each day, and each participant receives a t-shirt.
The program includes classroom lectures and hands-on activities. The teens will learn about patrol tactics, investigations, court proceedings, and crime scene processing. Students also will learn about the department's specialized units including the bomb squad and SWAT team. Students will not be allowed to shoot firearms; however, they will be introduced to the types of firearms and weapons used by officers and be able to use simulated training equipment. Students who enjoy what they learn in JCPA are encouraged to join the Law Enforcement Exploring Program.
Please note that priority will be given to new applicants. Those who have previously participated in the Junior Citizens' Police Academy are welcome to reapply; however, they will be placed on standby.
The department launched the Junior Citizens' Police Academy in July 2012. The initial class was held for only three days. Due to its popularity, the academy expanded to a five-day program in 2013 with 24 teens thanks to a $2500 donation from BNSF Railway.
Contact: Officer Cassandra Ravens