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Understanding the Sovereign Citizen

Course Description: The purpose of this course is to enhance officer safety by providing an overview of the ideologies behind the anti-government “Sovereign Citizen” movement. This course will illustrate the increasing challenges and dangers faced by law enforcement personnel when dealing with these individuals. Criminal activities, tactics, and “Paper Terrorism” techniques used by “Sovereigns” will be discussed and studies of known individuals and groups will be conducted.

Instructional Hours:  1 Day/6 Hours

Instructional Objectives:  The instructional goal of this class is to enhance officer safety by providing students with an understanding of the ideologies, tactics, and criminal activities of individuals involved with the anti-government "Sovereign Citizen" movement and the hazards presented when dealing with such individuals.

After completion, the student will be able to:

  • Define the meaning of the term "Sovereign Citizen."
  • State which personality types may identify with or be recruited by sovereign groups.
  • Explain the origins of the Sovereign Citizen Movement.
  • Explain the significance of the county Sheriff in sovereign ideology.
  • Provide examples of criminal activities engaged in by some sovereign individuals or groups.
  • Provide examples of written indicators of sovereign beliefs.
  • Provide examples of verbal indicators of sovereign beliefs.
  • Explain the Redemption Theory.
  • Provide examples of acts of "Paper Terrorism" committed by some sovereign citizens.
  • Reference applicable sections of the Pennsylvania Crimes Code when investigating activities of suspected sovereign citizens.
  • Provide the names of known individuals or sovereign groups and identify which groups are active within Pennsylvania.

Course Completion Requirements:  Attendance and successfully pass (70% or above) a 10-question written examination.

Audience: PSP, MP, LEO 

Registration: Please register for the classes below using form SP 8-130All applications must be received 7 days prior to the course start date.

Locations: For a list of all training centers and directions, please visit the Training Center Page.

NETC1/6/2020 9:00 AM1/6/2020 3:00 PMNETC Commanding Officer, 570-288-3659No
Maximum of 42 students
NWTC3/17/2020 9:00 AM3/17/2020 4:00 AMNWTC Commanding Officer, 814-332-6888No
Maximum of 20 students
Other, See Notes4/14/2020 9:00 AM4/14/2020 3:00 PMNETC Commanding Officer, 570-288-3659No
Maximum of 30 students
This class will be held at:
Mansfield University Public Safety Institute
518 North Hall
5 Swan Street
Mansfield, Pennsylvania
SWTC2/18/2020 9:00 AM2/18/2020 3:00 PMSWTC Commanding Officer, 724-832-5250No
Maximum of 40 students

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