The Training Unit is commanded by Captain Matt Hurst
Cobb County maintains a strong commitment to providing quality training to our personnel. To meet that commitment, the Department of Public Safety Police Academy provides extensive training and professional development opportunities to public safety employees.
Training provided to police recruits and sworn police department employees includes basic mandate, field training, leadership/supervision training, defensive tactics, emergency vehicle operator training, weapons training, scenario and de-escalation training, physical fitness, in-service training, advanced training, and much more. Most classes are taught on-site at the Police Academy, or in one of several other dedicated specialty training areas.
Public Safety Police Academy
The Cobb County Public Safety Police Academy is a 115,369 square-foot facility located on nineteen acres in southwestern Cobb County.
The public area of the Police Academy houses a large lobby, a 435-seat auditorium, and a community room.
The police training area includes 10 traditional classrooms which contain tables and chairs seating ranging in size from 30-190 students. A retractable wall in the largest classroom is available when necessary to increase the number classrooms. Three of the smaller classrooms are designed to function as computer labs as well, and are equipped with desktop computer stations for software training. A dedicated crime scene lab classroom is equipped with hard surface lab tables and a painted concrete floor for easy cleaning. Modern instructional audiovisual equipment is provided in all classrooms and the auditorium.
The facility also houses multiple specialty training areas including a 5,455-square foot padded Defensive Tactics training room and a Tactical Village. The Tactical village is a 18,833-square foot area with a simulated city street that allows for role player based scenarios. This area includes a simulated bank, motel room, apartment, convenience store, coffee shop, and courtroom. The area further houses rooms for two interactive video simulators in judgmental use of force and police driving.
Health and Fitness Center
The health and fitness center is a 7,000-square foot area that is equipped with state-of-the-art strength training equipment, free weights, cardio, and Purmotion cross-fit equipment. The weight room is fully equipped with separate areas dedicated to free weights, cable machine, cross-fit, plate loaded, and physical fitness testing areas. Locker rooms with showers are located adjacent to the fitness room. The fitness center is accessible 24/7 to public safety employees. The fitness training facility is staffed by an exercise physiologist who is available to assist in developing tailored health and wellness programs.
Weapons Training Facility
The Weapons Training facility is located off County Services Pkwy and includes a firearms training range. The facility is enclosed on three sides by a combination of a 22-foot dirt berm and/or a chain link fence, and the tower/shelter. The fourth side is enclosed by a 20-foot concrete retaining wall. The range operates 36 electronically controlled targets with a maximum shooting range of 50 yards. The range tower/shelter is approximately 100 feet long and 20 feet wide. The building is fully covered and enclosed on three sides. It houses a control/safety tower, storage room, and two student restrooms. The firing range is utilized by not only Cobb County, but also by other law enforcement agencies in Cobb County, military groups, and the North Central Georgia Law Enforcement Academy.
The EVOC facility is located off Al Bishop Dr. The driver training area encompasses 10+ acres and includes a separate skid pan area, as well as an asphalt surfaced multi-purpose area. This area allows for it to be used in several configurations such as a precision (cone) course, as well as an area that can be used for PIT training, traffic stops, and other law enforcement-related driver training. Located between the skid pan and multi-purpose areas is an administrative building that includes an office area, restrooms, and storage space for facility equipment such as cones, protective equipment, etc. In this same area is a paved surface that connects the skid pan and multi-purpose areas, which includes a traffic signal and marked lane area that is used for controlled braking and other exercises.
The Training Division of the Cobb County Police Department consists of four sections: mandate training, weapons training, field training and advanced training.
The mandate training section administers recruit schools each calendar year. The recruit training session is non-residential but is conducted in a paramilitary style of discipline, with high performance and conduct standards. The expanded basic course consists of about 27 weeks of training, which includes scenario/practical exercise days. These hours are far and above the state requirement of 408 hours. Recruits are challenged academically, physically, and mentally on a daily basis. Recruits are required to participate in a rigorous fitness program intended to develop the cardiovascular, muscular and mental strength. Students will be trained with the latest tactics and equipment by some of the most proficient instructors and subject matter experts in the state. In order to graduate, recruits will have to pass multiple academic and practical tests in a variety of police science topics. After the academy, recruit officers are trained by a field training officer for about 14 weeks. The new police officer will be prepared to meet all challenges while serving the Cobb County community with pride and professionalism.
The weapons training sections instructs all officers in firearms, chemical, less lethal, and other such weapon usage and certification. Each officer spends at least two days a year in firearms training.
The field training section is responsible to monitor, tutor, and assist all recruits, once they graduate mandate training. This section also recruits, evaluates, and trains all field training officers.
The advanced training section is responsible for all incumbent officers’ training. The unit also sponsors training provided by outside vendors that is generally available to officers from across the country.
The Training staff consists of 16 sworn officers and three civilians. It draws instructional expertise from through out the Police Departments and other various disciplines. Approximately 150 officers and other instructors contribute by teaching students at the academy each year.
The professional development training section provides advanced and higher educational opportunities to the department. This is achieved through partnerships with accredited colleges and universities that provide higher education classes for college credit to department members, including some college courses taught at the academy. Additionally, the unit hosts advanced executive level training and operates the driver training section.