The Training Unit is responsible for maintaining commissioned and civilian employees' training, both mandatory and voluntary, and the records thereof. Sergeant John Olszowka is the department Training Officer. Besides mandatory department training, which occurs approximately 4 times a year, officers and civilian employees attend numerous "outside" training events, usually in their fields of interest.
Besides department and outside training, the police department conducts some type of Roll Call training every week. Roll Call training, which by its nature is given before officers go out on the streets to begin their shift, is used for updates in department policies, procedures, updates in State laws or city ordinances, and generally anything else that would benefit the officers and their ability to do their job. Officer safety concerns are a high priority with Roll Call training.
We are required by Missouri's Department of Public Safety to attain and maintain a certain number of training hours in certain areas every 3 years. The Missouri POST program (Police Officer Standards and Training) is a regulatory agency that is responsible for the licensure of peace officers, reserve peace officers, basic training instructors, curriculum, and training centers. All licensed peace officers and reserve officers must successfully complete a minimum of forty-eight hours of continuing education in that 3-year period to maintain their peace officer license. Each officer shall complete a minimum of four hours in all four curricula areas: Legal, Interpersonal, Technical, and Skill Development. Twenty-four of the 48 hours must come from a POST "Approved Provider" and the remaining twenty-four may come from either "In-Service" training or a POST "Approved Provider."
The department is dedicated to educating our officers with as much new information as we can to keep them knowledgeable, safe, and professional in all situations. Training is taken very seriously and we hope to give our officers as much of it as possible. If you have any questions regarding training issues or bringing training to the St. Joseph Police Department, please contact Sgt. James Tonn at 816-232-7276 or write to him by emailing Sgt. James Tonn.
The Armorer, Officer Darryl Lehman, is responsible for the repair and maintenance of all department-owned firearms. All firearms need to be serviced and detailed on a regular basis, depending on the exact gun. The Armorer is responsible for all firearms training, preparing qualification courses, and maintaining firearms records. He also maintains the department's outdoor training facility.