Citizens Police Academy

Citizens Police Academy

The Citizen’s Police Academy (CPA) is a program designed to acquaint individuals who are not sworn police officers with an overview of the criminal justice department and the activities of their local police department. The CPA offers the community a better understanding of how law enforcement and the public can work together to prevent crime. The goal of the academy is to provide a greater perspective, understanding, and awareness for the challenges and decisions that law enforcement officers face on a daily basis safeguarding our community. 

The CPA consists of a 8-week course which introduces citizens to the police department and their practices. You must be at least 21 years of age, have no prior felony convictions, and must live or work in the Leesburg area. The weekly class allows participants to get a hands on learning experience in policing, including patrol techniques, response to resistance, community engagement, crime scene processing, and more. 

The instructors are officers, supervisors, and commanders of the Leesburg Police Department who offer years of experience and training in their areas of expertise. These officers also bring real life street experiences and help residents and community leaders better understand how and why police officers do what they do. 

After completion, citizens are eligible to apply with the department’s Citizen’s on Patrol, a group of citizens who assist the department by patrolling the community, managing traffic during city wide events, and more. Academy graduates may also be eligible to join the Police and Community Roundtable, a group that regularly meets with the Chief to discuss policing in the community. 

The Citizen’s Police Academy is free of charge. The next session runs from: March 8th-April 12th, meeting every Wednesday from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. There is one Saturday class, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Seating is limited and pre-registration is required. Most classes will be held at the Leesburg Police Department, located at 115 E. Magnolia Street in Leesburg.

How do I apply? 

The easiest way is to complete the online application found here: 
Citizen Police Academy Application

You may also pick up an application in the lobby of the Leesburg Police Department located at 115 E. Magnolia Street, Leesburg. 

For completed applications, you may return them to the lobby of the Leesburg Police Department or you may email them to Sergeant Shannon Walsh .  

For more information, please contact Sergeant Shannon Walsh at 352-728-9859.


When does the Citizen’s Police Academy meet? 

The next session runs from: To Be Announced later, meeting every Monday from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. There is one Saturday class,from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.  Seating is limited and pre-registration is required. Most classes will be held at the Leesburg Police Department, located at 115 E. Magnolia Street in Leesburg.

Who can attend the Citizen’s Police Academy? 

Anyone who meets the following minimal requirements: 
At least 21 years of age 
Provide the information necessary for a criminal background check 
* No prior felony convictions 
Live or work in the Leesburg Area 
Can commit to regularly attend classes 

Is there a cost to attend? 

No. The Academy is FREE!

What happens if you cannot attend each class? 

We understand that those who attend the program are people with busy schedules. Each participant is allowed to miss two classes (4 hours). This attendance policy helps to ensure that each participant gets the most benefit from the Academy. 

Will I get to shoot a gun? 

No. However, there will be weapons familiarization conducted by officers specializing in firearms.