KANDAHAR AIRFIELD, Afghanistan - Members of the Afghan National Police from Kandahar and Zabul provinces graduated from a combined, police training course during the month of July.
The six-day course focused on human rights, crime scene management, evidence handling, interview and interrogation techniques, and criminal investigation.
"The course established a foundation for all levels of investigate experience for the policemen," said U.S. Army Maj. Darren E. Shuler, Train, Advise and Assist Command-South Police Advisory Team officer-in-charge.
The Afghan National Police benefited from the years of experience provided by NATO-led Resolute Support advisors like Shuler and Wesley Coward, a law enforcement professional with the Police Advisory Team, and the lead instructor for the course.
"I have 33 years of service in police work, and I think it helps that the students know that I have experience in the field and can elaborate on the topics with my personal knowledge," said Coward. "Law enforcement is a big part of my life and to be able to share my knowledge with our Afghan counterparts is amazing, and it gives me a sense of accomplishment."
The course provided new skills for even the more experienced members of the group.
"The handling and processing of fingerprints was new to me," said Eaztuullah, a Kandahar police lieutenant. "We were able to learn more about what to do when we encounter this in the future, which will help us be better at our job."
Coward said the students were very receptive to all the information throughout the course.
"I think we gained their trust as the days passed because they began to engage more and ask questions," said Coward. "It was also an opportunity for policemen from different provinces to come together, meet each other and network."
Both Coward and Shuler said the overall goal for them was to be able to give these policemen a good foundation of skills that they can pass on to the younger members within their respective provinces.
"We want to encourage them to share what they have learned so far because if each of them shares their knowledge with one or two members in their teams, they enhance their capabilities internally," said Shuler.
Eaztuullah said he plans to share everything he has learned from the course and hopes to continue attending courses like this one.
"I like my job," said Eaztuullah. "I love learning more and new information about it so I can be a better investigator and mentor the investigators in our teams."