Citizens Graduate from Citizens Academy
A total of 14 citizens will graduate at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, May 27 from the Lexington County Public Safety Citizens’ Academy. Lexington County Sheriff James R. Metts will conduct a ceremony for the graduates in the Squad Room at the Lexington County James R. Metts Law Enforcement Complex, 521 Gibson Road, Lexington.
The 14 citizens completed an 11-week course of instruction, Metts said. The next session of the county Public Safety Citizens’ Academy will be conducted sometime in August.
Metts said he will present graduation certificates to the following 14 citizens: Vivien Bart, of Lexington; Marilyn Bundrick, of Lexington; Peggy Christian, of Chapin; William Christian, of Chapin; Kenneth Clark, of Swansea; Kevin Dunn, of Leesville; Nancy Hazelwood, of Gilbert; Daniel Kinzly, of Lexington; Chad Ott, of Pelion, Theresa Pacheco, of Lexington; Edgardo Perez, of West Columbia; Carmen Plemmons, of Columbia; Stephen Plemmons, of Columbia; and Carlether West, of Leesville.
Metts said citizens who want additional information about the Public Safety Citizens’ Academy or who want an application for the program can call Administrative Assistant Lori Drafts at (803) 785-2557 or e-mail her at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
In order to be eligible for enrollment in the Public Safety Citizens’ Academy, you must be at least 18 years old and reside in Lexington County, Metts said. Persons who have been convicted of serious crimes are not eligible for the program.
Metts implemented the Public Safety Citizens’ Academy in order to provide citizens with in-depth information about law enforcement, fire suppression, emergency medical, telecommunications and detention services that are provided to citizens in Lexington County.
Lexington County has implemented a unified chain of command to plan and execute a multi-disciplinary public safety response in the event of a critical incident, Metts said. The Sheriff’s Department coordinates planning, training and equipment purchases for public safety agencies in order to enhance homeland security in Lexington County.
Metts implemented the Citizens’ Academy program in April 1996 in order to provide citizens with an in-depth understanding about how the Sheriff’s Department protects and serves citizens in one of South Carolina’s fastest growing counties.
The Public Safety Citizens’ Academy consists of a hands-on course of instruction about law enforcement, fire and EMS operations in a large, fast-growing county, Metts said.
During the Public Safety Citizens’ Academy, Sheriff’s Department supervisors explain how regional patrol operations reduce the amount of time that it takes deputies to respond to calls for help from citizens, Metts said. The program also includes instruction on planning and training that is being conducted locally to enhance homeland security and provide a coordinated public safety response in the event of a terrorist attack in Lexington County.
Participants in the Public Safety Citizens’ Academy learn how telecommunications officers dispatch law enforcement, fire and EMS personnel to aid citizens who have called for help, Metts said. A detective who investigates gang activity informs citizens about how they can work in partnership with law enforcement to report gang activity in Lexington County.