The Kent Police Department recognizes and provides learning opportunities for persons studying in criminal justice and related fields through an internship program. Internships provide a valuable opportunity for qualified students to participate in the day-to-day functioning of a justice-related agency.
Interns will observe police functions in a regulated and productive manner. It is also imperative that the Kent Police Department properly screens those persons wanting to intern in order to safeguard the integrity of the Department and to provide those persons the most productive internship possible without subjecting them to undue risk or harm during their experience.
A person wanting to be an intern or observer with the Kent Police Department must follow the following steps for application and processing:
- The applicant must be over 18 years of age.
- The original request must be submitted in writing to the attention of the Chief of Police. The person's educational background, reason for the request, and time frame or hours needed should be mentioned in the request.
- After reviewing the request, the Chief or her designee will meet with the person. At that time, the applicant will be asked to complete a waiver allowing a brief background check and for the release of information.
- A written authorization from the applicant's academic sponsor is required.
- The applicant is expected to be truthful answering any questions posed to him/her during the interview.
- After meeting with the applicant, the Chief will review the information provided. If the student is approved as an intern, the Chief or her designee will have the person return for a meeting concerning their schedule, review internship guidelines, and to complete the Internship Approval/Special Waiver of Damage or Injury Form (see below).
- There is no employment relationship.
- Privileges may be revoked at any time.
- The applicant is given a copy of their schedule along with a copy of the following expectations during their experience with the Kent Police Department.
The following guidelines will apply to interns/observers during their observation period:
- While in and around the Police Department and participating with police officers, it is expected that your dress will be reasonably presentable in a business fashion. For males, it is recommended that you wear a collared shirt and long pants at all times and it is advisable to wear a tie. Females may wear dresses, skirts or slacks.
- At no time will you represent yourself as a police officer or a member of the Kent Police Department, either during the time that you are with members of the Police Department or during any other time. You are strictly a civilian observer who has been afforded the privilege of observing the professionals of the Kent Police Department while performing their duties.
- Since you will be participating with on-duty officers, your behavior must be representative of the professional standards by which our employees are bound. You are to deal with the public in a positive manner at all times and are expected to be very courteous and helpful in the understanding of any requests that may be made.
- You are not to take any law enforcement actions while interning with the Kent Police Department. You will be responsible to comply with all direct orders, either by supervisory officers of the Police Department or by an officer to whom you are assigned for any given shift. This may at times require you to step away from an incident that's being handled. This is being done for your safety as well as the safety of the public, and you must immediately comply. If you are unsure how you should react in any given situation, or what your responsibilities may be, you are expected to immediately ask a member of the Police Department for direction and guidance.
- You may not take any written reports or information from the Police Department without the approval of the supervisory officer. Names of persons involved, unless a report is a public records report, must be redacted before you remove them.
- While as a member of the Police Department you must respect the privilege of privacy that we commonly afford to the public. It would not be appropriate for you to discuss the specifics regarding people or actions that are taken by officers in the performance of their duties.
- When assigned to the Patrol Division, you are to report to the on-duty Shift Supervisor daily, unless otherwise instructed.
- When assigned to the Detective Bureau, you will report daily to the Detective Bureau Supervisor, unless otherwise instructed.
- When assigned to the Juvenile Bureau, you will report to the Juvenile Officer, unless otherwise instructed.
- Absences should be reported in advance to the supervisor to whom you are to report that day.
- A member of the Kent Police Department will be designated to supervise your internship, to act as a liaison between the police department and your university advisor, and to provide an evaluation of your performance using the forms provided by your university program.
- We reserve the right to read and review any reports or papers that are prepared as a result of your experience with the Kent Police Department. This will provide us with a better understanding of your experiences with the Kent Police Department and provide us the opportunity to improve the experience of future interns.