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Lawton Citizen Police Academy

Lawton_Serve and protect-- it's the motto of the police. Some of Lawton's citizens are adding it to their own motto.  About 50 Lawton residents came out to Lawton's 14th annual Citizen Police Academy where they'll learn all about what it's like to be a Lawton Police Officer.

   From the entire city, right down to their own neighborhoods. "I've lived here for a long time and I wanted to let Lawton know I'm doing something to give something back and maybe pass something on to somebody else and get the ball rolling" said Lawton resident James Wall.

  He's not the only one hoping to make a difference. "I came from a city in California that is one of the safest in the country and I hope I can do my part to make this one as safe," said Lawton's Judy Siem.

  Over the next 12 weeks, they'll learn how to do exactly that. "Anything from our K-9 unit all the way to our officers who just work the streets. It's important for those citizens to go out and know exactly what we do and we cover it. Anything from a to z. Everything from a traffic stop to our swat team, our tactical team," said Master Officer Charles Whittington with the Lawton Police Department.

  Students will learn how to fire a gun and how to defend themselves. They'll do a ride-along and much more. "Plus, just learning the dispatch aspect of it, I think that takes real talent in people to be able to do that," said Siem.

  Master Officer Whittington said he had more applications than ever before and he had to cap the class at 50. This bunch can't wait to spread the word of what they learn. "I'm going to understand the police department a lot better, I'm going to understand the way they do things the way they do them, why they do them the way they do them, and then I'm going to be able to spread that message on to everybody else."

  The Citizen Police Academy is free and open to the public and is filled on a first-come, first-served basis. The next class will be in May.

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