Friday, March 17, 2017

CSPD defends its police academy driving program

Posted By on Fri, Mar 17, 2017 at 7:35 AM

click to enlarge The CSPD academy has lost eight recruits this time around due to failing the driving test. - JOHN ROMAN IMAGES/SHUTTERSTOCK.COM
  • John Roman Images/Shutterstock.com
  • The CSPD academy has lost eight recruits this time around due to failing the driving test.
In the March 8 edition, we ran a story about the Colorado Springs Police Department firing eight recruits from its current police academy for failing the driving test.

You can read that story here. ("CSPD's academy flunks eight due to failing the driving test," News, March 8, 2017)

We were required to submit an open records request to the CSPD for information and didn't hear back in time to include that information.

On Wednesday, March 15, we received an email from CSPD spokesman Lt. Howard Black in response to the records request.

In it, the CSPD produced a boilerplate document that all recruits are required to sign that acknowledges the stringent requirements necessary to pass the driving test, including the ban on striking even one cone. Here's that document:

Also, Black states:
The recruits received their driving lecture on Friday, February 3, 2017. At that time the recruits took their written driving test. Additionally each recruit was given the 66th Recruit Class Driver Training Testing Procedures handout. The handout as explained to the recruits and each recruit was provided a copy of the procedures to review. Each recruit signed the testing procedures paperwork that acknowledged the testing protocols and what factors would result in a test failure. This included the information that striking a cone was an action which would result in a test failure. The handout also explained the procedures for remedial driving training and the retest process. 
He also says the department currently has an authorized strength of 684 sworn officers and has 670 on duty, which includes 37 recruits. The academy, which started with 48 and now has 36, graduates the new class on April 14. (He didn't explain why there are 37 recruits counted in the ranks when only 36 remain in the academy.)

Black also provided this letter from the Colorado Peace Officers Standards and Training office praising the CSPD's academy.

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