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Portsmouth teens participate in Law Enforcement Explorer Academy

portsmouth police explorers academy.jpg
Posted at 1:17 PM, Aug 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-24 17:50:38-04

PORTSMOUTH, Va. – As summer winds down, a group of teenagers in Portsmouth is taking the opportunity to learn more about law enforcement.

The Portsmouth Police Department is hosting a week-long introductory session to its Explorers Program, which is a year-round educational program designed for teens and young adults ages 14-21.

“Our Explorers do everything from community service events; they assist with 5K runs, parades,” described Officer Allen Washington with the Community Enhancement Division of Portsmouth Police Department. “So, our Law Enforcement Explorers is basically a law enforcement JROTC version of what the military has.”

This week’s program is designed for ages 13-16. In it, teens learn everything from physical fitness, to defense tactics and first aid training, to traffic safety. In addition, police say it helps them learn team-building skills and leadership skills.

“So, it bridges the gap between our local youth and our law enforcement in our city,” stated Officer Washington. “We get a better understanding of our youth. Our youth gets a better understanding of us, because they start to learn why it is that we do what we do on the street. So, they get a better understanding and they’re less likely to be afraid of us, they’re more likely come to us, and we need recruits.”

For more information on the Law Enforcement Explorers Academy, click here. You can also visit the website of the Portsmouth Police Athletic League.