I would like to commend and recognize the Aiken Department of Public Safety for their recent Citizens Public Safety Academy. Yes, I attended this academy, which was a 9-week training program covering all aspects of the department’s functions, operations and responsibilities.

This comprehensive program included basic patrol functions, fire fighting, use of force, community policing, traffic safety, criminal investigations, youth services, etc. The academy is a direct result of ADPS Director Charles Barranco’s community policing initiative. This citizens’ training course was especially meaningful, as all of the instructors were members of Aiken Public Safety and responsible for and directly involved in the activities they covered. I was very impressed with their desire and enthusiasm to let us know exactly what they do every day to protect us and make Aiken a safer place to live.

The officers involved spent several hours every Thursday evening sharing their expertise and experiences with us, often after working their respective shifts tired but committed to educating us. So, well done Aiken Public Safety. And thanks to Barranco and especially Lt. Harm who masterfully oversaw all aspects of the training in a very enthusiastic and enjoyable manner.

And of course, thanks to all of the officers who took their valuable time to prepare for their presentations and the professional manner in which they covered the various subjects.

We’ll see you out in our neighborhoods.

Roger Brock