Residents interested in learning about law and order in Contra Costa County are in luck because the District Attorney’s Office has announced it is bringing back its Community Academy Class for the fall.
Applications will be accepted now through July 26 for the academy, which provides residents the opportunity to learn about their community’s criminal justice system through a comprehensive overview of how the DA’s office operates.
"I am proud to increase transparency and accessibility to our office with the start of this Community Academy," District Attorney Diana Becton said prior to the program's inception last August. "My hope is that the community will understand more about the work we do here. Additionally, we can also build bridges to community members wanting to get a closer look at our office."
At least 20 Contra Costa County residents will be accepted into the free 12-week course, which will be held at the DA’s Office in downtown Martinez, 900 Ward St., every Wednesday from 5:30-7:30 p.m. starting Sept. 4.
County officials say admitted applicants will receive an in-depth look at how cases are filed, the different crimes investigated by the county, as well as the wide variety of work undertaken by the DA’s office to prevent crime, support children and parents, and care for victims of crime.
Members of the academy will get to interact with an assortment of advocates that keep the wheels of the criminal justice system moving, such as deputy district attorneys, investigators, victim advocates, support staff, community-based organizations and other justice partners.
The academy is free and is open to residents who live or work in Contra Costa County.
In order to apply, participants will need to pass a background check and fill out an application that can be acquired via the district’s website, or in person at one of the following office locations:
* 900 Ward St., Martinez.
* 10 Douglas Drive Suite 130, Martinez.
* 100 37th St. Room 220, Richmond.
Applicants may be emailed to DA-CommunityAcademy@contracostada.org or to the DA’s public information officer, Scott Alonso, at Scott.Alonso@contracostada.org.