Estimated 23 Attend Wilson County Sheriff’s Citizens’ Academy
Some 23 people are about to discover what it’s like being inside or operating a jail, trying to decide whether to shoot or safely disarm a criminal suspect, how to be a dispatcher and find out what it’s like to work for the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office.
Wilson County Sheriff Robert Bryan welcomed the group along with Sgt. James Lanier, who will be conducting the Sheriff’s Citizens’ Academy, which is a 10-week course that meets from 6-9 p.m. every Tuesday at the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office located at 105 E. High St., Lebanon, TN.
The Sheriff, Sgt. Lanier and several other presenters gave class members an overview of what they can expect to learn over the next few months. Some of the classes include discussions of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, domestic violence, patrol procedures, Schools Resource Officers, Civil and Criminal Warrants, DUI awareness, police K-9 demonstrations, handcuffing procedures and other law enforcement functions. The course also includes hands-on activities, field trips such as a three-hour jail tour, a visit to the firing range, lectures by Communications dispatchers, a representative from the District Attorney’s Office, demonstrations in boating safety and the Office’s Special Response Team among other activities.
“We are pleased this many people are interested in learning about the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office and what this department does for Wilson County,” Sheriff Robert Bryan said. “We hope they will enjoy the classes and presenters who have worked hard to show what the Officers do, why and how they go about their jobs.”
Although all participants must pass a background check, there are no minimum physical requirements, just a desire to learn more about law enforcement and get exposure to day-to-day aspects of the many facets involved in enforcing the law and assisting fellow citizens.
“This class helps to foster a better understanding between the citizens and the Sheriff’s Office,” said Wilson County Sheriff’s Sgt. James Lanier. “It familiarizes the citizens with how the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office operates. This course shows how different the Sheriff’s Office is from the other law enforcement offices in Wilson County, how much more responsibility the Office has compared to other agencies.”
“The Citizen’s Sheriff’s Academy provides a unique interactive look at the scope of our county’s law enforcement,” said Sam Shallenberger, a graduate of the Citizen’s Sheriff’s Academy and President of the Academy’s Alumni Association. “I came away from the experience with the impression that the Sheriff’s Office is like an iceberg, with only a portion visible to the general public. Sgt. Lanier established the Alumni Association so that graduates can continue to contribute and support the ongoing citizen education the academy offers.”
Sheriff Bryan started the Sheriff’s Citizens Academy three years ago to offer the community and business people a voluntary opportunity to get a better understanding of and full exposure to the Sheriff’s Office.