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Kilgore, TX -- The Kilgore Police Department has long recognized that clergy and their congregations are an abundant and dynamic community resource. In order to more fully engage the faith-based community in our combined Community Policing concept, a Clergy and Police Alliance (C.A.P.A.) program has been developed.
This program is a unique ministerial opportunity. C.A.P.A. members and their organizations will be called upon to pray for the police department, to be intentional in the building of relationships with law enforcement and other governmental officials, be available on a voluntary basis and ride with officers on patrol to view and evaluate community issues and be available for crisis interaction involving our community members with follow-up ministerial services. Our goal with the C.A.P.A. program is to involve churches of every faith and denomination in the Kilgore area.
Some of the benefits of this program for our department include: providing calm in crisis situations to prevent an escalation to violence; offering support to victims; assisting in a situation where a minister is requested or needed; relaying factual law enforcement information back to your congregations and community neighborhoods related to criminal justice issues; assisting the police in non-traditional roles; and responding in disaster situations.
Before becoming part of the C.A.P.A. program, Clergy will first attend a special 20-hour training course sponsored by local law enforcement similar to our Citizen Police Academy. This 8-week class, three hours a week on Tuesdays, is designed especially for pastors, clergy and religious leaders to introduce them to the inner-workings of a police department and the criminal justice system. Pastors and Church Leaders will receive classroom and “hands on” training in the areas of crime scene search, family violence, sex crimes, homicide investigation, traffic enforcement, narcotics, communications, use of force, internal affairs, high risk incident command issues, training, law, background investigation and emergency response.
After graduation, the new C.A.P.A. members will ride with a police officer to finish their training in a field environment scenario. Spending time with officers gives them a better understanding of police protocol before acting in the official capacity as a C.A.P.A. member.
As law enforcement officials, we believe a Clergy and Police Alliance program is a natural extension of our Departments Community Policing philosophy. This is a great opportunity for both law enforcement and ministers to come together and work hand in hand to solve our community problems.
Our goal is to have a representative from every church, denomination, and faith from our city become involved.
The Kilgore Police Department is now accepting applications for the upcoming Clergy and Police Alliance Academy scheduled to begin on September 3, 2019 and run through October 22, 2019. You can pick up an application at the Kilgore Police Department located at 909 N. Kilgore St. or visit the C.A.P.A. section of our website to download an application. Applications will be accepted through August 30, 2019. The academy is scheduled to meet on Tuesday nights from 6pm – 8:30/9pm.
Applicants must be at least 17 years of age, must have a valid driver’s license, must live or work in the City of Kilgore or within the surrounding area, and maintain an ordination license from an organization like the American Fellowship Church or be recognized as ordained by your church leadership. All applicants are subject to a preliminary background investigation. Members who are in leadership roles, ie..Associate Pastors, Deacons, with the church may also apply.
For questions regarding the Kilgore Police Department’s Clergy and Police Alliance Academy, please contact Jonathan Latham, Victim Services Coordinator at (903)218-6926 or Detective Tim Dukes (Department Chaplain) at (903) 218-6904.
Apply soon – Class size is limited