Citizen's Police Academy

The Bentonville Police Department established the Citizen’s Police Academy in 1999 and since its inception, graduated approximately 300 citizens. The slogan of the Citizen’s Police Academy is "Understanding through Education." The purpose of the Citizen’s Police Academy is to provide information to the public to dispel misconceptions and increase the rapport between citizens and police officers, as well as to give the public a working knowledge of the Bentonville Police Department.

Goals of the Academy

The main goals of the academy are to partner with the community, explain the operations of the police department, and encourage citizens to undertake measures to prevent themselves from becoming crime victims. Academy participants gain an understanding of police procedures that are more reflective of everyday police work than what television and movies portray. They also learn how they can help to make their community crime-free. Participants become sources for new ideas as we learn from them in the process of teaching. In addition to new ideas, our Citizen’s Police Academy also provides an avenue for our officers to learn about the concerns of our community members. It encourages police interaction with the public and provides a measure of accountability to the community.

Note: Applicants must be at least 18 years-of-age to participate in the Citizen’s Police Academy.

Session Topics & Instruction

Each session consists of ten consecutive Monday night classes held at City of Bentonville facilities. The instruction is comprehensive and each week separate areas of the department are covered. Some examples of some of the topics that are covered include:

  • Patrol Division
  • Criminal Investigation Division
  • Training and Recruiting
  • Emergency Communications Center
  • Digital Forensics / Child Advocacy Center
  • K-9
  • Bomb Squad
  • Traffic Unit / DWI - DRE Program
  • SWAT
  • Child Advocacy Center Overview

Instruction consists of lectures, demonstrations, tours, and riding with an officer on a shift.

We hope the graduates of the Citizen’s Police Academy become more aware and better informed about how the Bentonville Police Department operates, and will recommend to their friends, coworkers and families to join the Bentonville Police Department in this rewarding program.


To enroll in a class you must print, complete, and submit a Citizen’s Police Academy Application (PDF) to the:
Bentonville Police Department
908 SE 14th Street
Bentonville, AR 72712

You may email the completed application to