County Law Agencies Share Vision, Effort

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Working in partnership with Gila Community College, the Gila County attorney, along with the sheriff's office, and the Payson and Globe police departments are combining resources to offer a local law enforcement academy to the residents by the fall semester of 2008.

Those aspiring to a career in law enforcement are encouraged to contact the agency that they wish to have sponsor them for the academy.

Prospective cadets should call the agency they wish to pursue employment with in order to begin the testing and background checks needed to be accepted into the academy.

The academy will be held in both northern and southern Gila County. The academy is scheduled to start at Gila Community College in September 2008 and conclude in June 2009.

The academy provides cadets the opportunity to earn certification through the Arizona Peace Officer Standards and Training Board (AZ POST). AZ POST is the sanctioning agency in Arizona.

All law enforcement officers must be Arizona POST Certified. Training components include: laws of arrest, search and seizure, rules of evidence, sex crimes investigations, fingerprinting, death investigations, DUI law, and narcotics and dangerous drugs, just to name a few.

The training offered through Gila Community College will save local agencies the expense of having to send cadets to the Valley for training. Cadets will not have to travel from home for the training.

Those wishing to enter the academy must contact a sponsoring agency and fulfill the application requirements.

All cadets completing the academy will have earned a significant number credit hours toward an Associate of Arts degree from Gila Community College.

Those wishing to continue their education after completing the rigors of the academy are encouraged to contact Patricia Burke at (928) 425-8481 or Pam Butterfield at (928) 468-8039 for individual career and academic counseling.

Sponsoring agencies and contacts are as follows:

  • Payson Police Department, Chief Don Engler, (928) 474-5242;
  • Globe Police Department, Lt Dan Melvin, (928) 425-5751;
  • Gila County Sheriff's Department, Lt. Mike Johnson, (928) 402-8573.

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