Olive Branch police team with residents through training academy - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Olive Branch police team with residents through training academy

By Chip Washington - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook

OLIVE BRANCH, MS (WMC-TV) - North Mississippi residents are learning first hand what it's like to be a police officer through a unique training program.

"I do think it makes a difference when we have the community involved," said Nicole Sorenson, the department's volunteer coordinator. "That's why I'm so excited for Chief Gammage to start us out for a new year."

It's the fifth year for the two month program, a citizen's police academy, which trains civilians on police procedure. Sorenson was a member of the first class before becoming volunteer coordinator.  Sorenson says the experience gives you a greater appreciation for what the police do.

"I want to see them out there," she said. "I'm excited to see when they're out there on the road, and I think that's good for everyone. We need to learn that lesson: they're there for our good."

Olive Branch Chief Don Gammage says the training is designed to give volunteers a real sense of what officers deal with daily.   Nick Carson, who was recently robbed, said he feels the concept of community policing is a good one.

"It helps knowing what the police officers do everyday, going out there and risking their lives," he said. "That way, you're more informed of what they do and you can watch out for your community a little better."

The next class begins on September 17, and will run through November 19th. There are only 20 slots available, so if you're interested, contact the Olive Branch Police Department at 662-895-4111.

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