Feb. 24, 2021
CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, VA – The Chesterfield County Police Department is inviting community members to help select future police officers.
In a video released on the police department's social media channels today, Col. Jeffrey S. Katz announced the new initiative, which will incorporate volunteers into the department's police recruit hiring process.
"Here in Chesterfield, we are committed to making sure that everyone in our community sees our law enforcement personnel as partners, as protectors, and as people who are there to preserve their civil rights and make them feel safe and valued as members of our community," Katz says in the video. "We've done a lot of soul searching. We've done a lot of listening. And we've come up with … things that we can do as a community to come together to reinforce my fervent belief that the police and the community are indeed one."
Katz continues: "I do believe that there is a place for members of our community to be at the table with their police department in making certain judgmental decisions — one of which, notably, is the selection of personnel who will serve as police officers in the first place."
Effective today, CCPD is seeking interested community members to become Level-1 police department volunteers and participate in panel interviews of police officer applicants and review summary reports of applicant background investigations.
To become an authorized Level-1 volunteer, community members must complete much of the same process police applicants must complete, including a background investigation and interview, a polygraph examination, a panel interview with department commanders and a psychological assessment.
"I value our community's voice, and I'm asking for their voice," Katz says. "If you have an interest in joining with us and making a decision about who should and should not be members of our police department, I'm asking for your assistance." He adds that he is not aware of another agency nationwide that's implemented a similar program.
"We have a way to blaze a trail here," he says. "We have an opportunity to do something positive and productive, and we have a chance to do that together."
For more information about this and other volunteer opportunities with the Chesterfield County Police Department, please visit www.chesterfield.gov/ccpdvolunteer.