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Duluth to begin free Citizen Police Academy on Wednesday

DULUTH - Duluth residents can get a taste of the life of a police officer, as the city is beginning the latest session of the Citizen Police Academy.

The free program teaches classes on arrest procedures, search and seizure, patrol procedures, forensic evidence, drugs and gangs, traffic enforcement and more. The sessions event include a courtroom mock trial, a voluntary ride-along with an officer and the opportunity to experience Duluth's Immersive Virtual Reality Simulator.

The simulator is a "300-degree high-definition use of force firearms training" system, according to a press release, and participants will be put into the role of a police officer having to make split-second decisions to react to scenarios.

The first of 11 classes for the academy begins Wednesday. Classes are 6:30 to 9 p.m. on consecutive Tuesdays after the initial class.

While class space is limited, officials encourage citizens at least 17 years old to apply. Applicants must be willing to submit to a criminal history background check, and first preference for the academy will be given to people who live or work within the city limits of Duluth.

For information, go to www.duluthpd.com or contact Officer Scott Parrish, who is with the Community Oriented Policing Division at sparrish@duluthpd.com or at 678-475-3514.