Residents who want a better understanding of police operations and how they can contribute to the safety of their community are invited to attend a “Citizen Academy” hosted by the Riverside Police Department, officials announced Tuesday.

The next academy is set for Sept. 12 and will require a once-a-week commitment through Nov 21.

According to the police department, the academy will include classes on neighborhood watch, traffic safety and how to report crimes. There will be no formal training in law enforcement techniques. However, attendees will come away with a “basic insight as to how police personnel perform their duties,” Community Services Bureau spokesman Enrique Barboza said.

“All sessions are in a classroom setting,” he said, noting that no physical training will be required, but attendees “may (need) to stand for up to three hours.”

Most classes will be held at the police department’s Magnolia Station, on the west end of the city.

Applications for admission to the academy are being accepted. Barboza said applicants, who must be at least 18 years old, are required to undergo an “informal background check” prior to acceptance.

Anyone interested can download an application at www.riversideca.gov/rpd/community/academy.asp, or contact Barboza for more information at 951-826-5704.

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