© Photos courtesy of the Toppenish Mural Society
City Contacts City Services Community Departments Doing Business Employment Public Documents

Home>Departments>Police>Community Policing

Community Policing


The Toppenish Police Department is involved with a number of community groups and programs, including the Community Safety Network or CSN) , Crime Free Rental Housing, and Block Watch. 


The Crime Free Rental Housing Program is a program that works with landlords of rental properties to help make rental properties safer.  The Toppenish Police Department provides training and information to assist the landlords that are involved in the program.  The Crime Free Rental Housing Program Coordinator in Toppenish is Sergeant Jake Church.  For more information please contact Sgt. Church at (509) 865-4355.   

Community Policing


Women’s Self Defense
Since 2009 the Toppenish Police Department has held a Women’s Self Defense Class.  This course is designed as a low impact course to teach women some basic self defense techniques and personal awareness.  The class is free of charge and has had over 100 graduates.  The course is traditionally offered once to twice a year and is open to adult women or teenage girls only if their female guardian takes the class with them.

The Women’s Self Defense Class was fortunate to receive sponsorship for the 2012 and 2013 classes from the Zonta Women’s Club of Yakima Valley.  If you are interested in taking this course contact Sgt. Jake Church at (509) 865-4355.

Student Education


Block Watch
Block Watch is a program where neighbors come together and look out for each other. Informal meetings are held to introduce neighbors and elect Block Watch Captains. If interested in starting a block watch, the Toppenish Police Department and the Northwest Community Action Center will provide appropriate training to the members and assist in the formation of the Block Watch.
For more information regarding Block Watch, contact Sgt. Jake Church at (509) 865-4355.

Narcotics Investigations
The Toppenish Police Department works in cooperation with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), LEAD Task Force, Yakima County Sheriff's Department, and residents to combat drug trafficking in our area.

Victim Notification Program
The Victim Notification Program allows eligible victims and witnesses to obtain reliable and timely information regarding a criminal alien's release from custody. Victims are to register with ICE in order to recieve notification of a criminal alien's release. Visit http://www.ice.gov/victim-notification

Police Explorers
In 2012 the Toppenish Police Department began a Police Explorer Program.  This program is designed to provide youth from the ages of 15-21 an opportunity to gain experience, knowledge, and training in the field of law enforcement.  Participants must pass an extensive background check and be willing to volunteer time each month to the program.  For more information regarding Police Explorers please contact Ofc. Juan Ceja at (509) 865-4355
This is a program sponsored by the Toppenish Police Department and affiliated with the Boy Scouts of America. Exploring is designed to give young men and women, who are interested in a career in law enforcement, an opportunity to gain first-hand knowledge of the career field by working side by side with Police Officers.

Explorers perform traffic control at city events, appear at community functions, and provide security for local groups and other crime prevention activities.

Explorers also ride along with Toppenish Police Officers on uniformed patrol, assisting with various duties.
There are also competitions with other exploring posts from around the state and nation on a regular basis.


Membership in the post is open to anyone between the ages of 14 and 21. With a desire to make a strong personal commitment to the post. There are attendance and work performance standards once you are accepted into the post.



Bi-weekly meetings held at the police department consist of law enforcement training including: radio procedures, officer safety, rules and regulations, report writing, criminal and civil laws, preservation of evidence, search and seizure laws, collision investigation, felony arrest procedures, and traffic stops.
State academies are held twice a year. Each academy is a week-long and is held either at Ft Lewis or Yakima Training Center. See your instructor for academy requirements.

Frequently asked questions:
What is included in the application Process?
You must pass an oral interview, and  felony background check. Or be willing to discuss a plan to abide by department ethics

Do explorers wear a uniform?
Each explorer will have some responsibility to purchase parts of the uniform.

What are benefits of Police Exploring?
Earn community service for college portfolios, there are scholarships open only to explorers, police ride-alongs and training.

What is the academy like?
The academy is para-military and is similar to a boot camp.

Do I have to be interested in being a Police Officer to be an explorer?
No. Exploring is open to anyone who meets the qualifications, and is a valuable experience for any career field and an opportunity for gang impacted and at risk youth to make a positive life choice toward public service. 









© Photos courtesy of the Toppenish Mural Society