Sheriff's Citizen Academy

About the Academy

The York-Poquoson Sheriff's Office Citizen Academy is a 43-hour block of instruction designed to give the citizens of York County and the City of Poquoson a working knowledge of the Sheriff's Office and the criminal justice system. 12 comprehensive 3-hour classes covering various areas of the Sheriff's Office and specific law enforcement topics will be held once a week. Certified law enforcement instructors, sheriff's office supervisors, as well as guest speakers, will conduct these instructional blocks.

Emphasis will be placed on the Patrol Section due to its highly visible contact with the community. The curriculum covers diverse topics such as:
  • 911 Communications
  • Criminal investigations
  • Criminal law
  • DWI investigations
  • Family violence
  • Firearms and weapons use
  • Hiring
  • Hostage negotiations
  • Jail operations
  • Narcotics enforcement
  • Policies and procedures
  • Tactical operations
  • Training

Goal of the Academy

The goal of the Sheriff's Citizen Academy is to increase law enforcement awareness, dispel suspicions and misconceptions, and increase community rapport through the educational process. Students' interaction and input will indeed contribute to this 2-way learning experience.


Each 12-Week Academy Session will meet on Monday evenings for 3 hours and an additional 3 to 5 hour Saturday firearms session. There is no charge for the Academy, however, a substantial commitment for participants to attend 10 of the 12 scheduled sessions is required to successfully complete and receive a Certificate of Graduation. Additionally, each student must ride with a deputy on patrol for 4 hours.


Most of the academy sessions will be held at the main office of York-Poquoson Sheriff's Office however, off site classes include the York-Poquoson Courthouse, Virginia Peninsula Regional Jail, Merrimac Juvenile Detention Center and the Hampton Roads Academy of Criminal Justice.


The Academy is open to all citizens who reside or work in York County or the City of Poquoson. Applicants must be at least 21 years of age and successfully pass a background investigation.

Citizen Sheriff's Academy Application Form (Fillable)