JSU Launches State's First Investigator Academy for Law Enforcement


Attorney General Steve Marshall visited the Alabama Investigator Academy's first day of classes on Feb. 23. Photo by Matt Reynolds.

Alabama law enforcement personnel will now have access to better training in investigations following the establishment of the Alabama Investigator Academy. A partnership between the Center for Best Practices in Law Enforcement at Jacksonville State University and the Alabama Peace Officers Standards and Training Commission (APOSTC), the program is the first of its kind in the state.

“I am pleased to support the new Alabama Investigator Academy and look forward to its contributions toward enhancing the effectiveness of criminal investigations and prosecutions within our state,” said Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall, who visited the academy on its first day of classes at JSU’s Fort McClellan campus in Anniston on Feb. 23. 

The state certified academy will provide law enforcement participants 80 hours of specialized training in investigations, covering topics such as crime scene procedures, death investigation, interviewing techniques, criminal law procedures, case file preparation and courtroom testimony. With the curriculum accredited by APOSTC, Alabama is now one of only two states providing a state certified training program in investigations. 

“For years, Jacksonville State – with the support of the Alabama Peace Officers Standards and Training Commission – has been a center of excellence in hosting the successful Northeast Alabama Law Enforcement Academy, and more recently the Center for Best Practices in Law Enforcement,” Marshall said. “Accordingly, thousands of Alabama law enforcement officers are employing the skills and techniques learned at JSU to protect our communities. Therefore, it is fitting that the university will partner with APOSTC to raise training to the next level, incorporating comprehensive training for Alabama law enforcement investigators covering all aspects of a case, from processing a crime scene to testifying in court.”

More than 25 officers from across the state are participating in the academy’s first session. Two to three sessions will be hosted per year, with the next scheduled for July. The curriculum is taught by national experts in the field, led by faculty from the JSU Department of Criminal Justice and Forensic Investigation.

“I would like to express my gratitude to APOSTC, Attorney General Marshall, the university administration and the Alabama State Legislature for supporting this much needed training curriculum,” said Kaleb Littlejohn, director of the Center for Best Practices in Law Enforcement. “We are excited for the opportunity to give back to all law enforcement officers statewide.” 

Established in 2017, the JSU Center for Best Practices in Law Enforcement provides free supplemental training in emerging trends to police officers and other law enforcement personnel across the state. Since 2018, the center has provided training to more than 1500 officers, with courses such as Community Policing: Winning Back Your Community, Interviewing Strategies, Statement Analysis, and Taking the Lead: Courageous Leadership for Today’s Public Safety.

Officers interested in signing up for training should visit the JSU Continuing Education website at www.jsu.edu/ceo or contact Kaleb Littlejohn at CBPLE@jsu.edu