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kaitiepaige17
06-18-2010, 10:24 PM
My current MC's father is the Lieutenant for their small town's police station, and Max (the MC) is planning on working for his father after he graduates high school.

What schooling would he have to go through in order to work at the police station? Would going to a police academy be necessary? Could he simply work his way up from a desk jockey to police officer since his father is in such a high power position? Thanks for any help, I don't know much about this :)

Stanmiller
06-18-2010, 11:02 PM
K,
here's the local PD's requirements
Hiring Requirements:

Be at least 21 years of age.
Be a United States citizen.
Have a high school diploma or equivalent.
Have or be able to obtain a valid S. C. drivers license.
Have not had a driver's license suspension during the last five years for D.U.I., leaving the scene of an accident, reckless homicide or involuntary manslaughter.
Have never been convicted of a felony or Criminal Domestic Violence.
Have never been convicted of a crime of moral turpitude or a misdemeanor carrying a possible sentence of more than one year.
Have not defaulted on a student loan.
Have a good credit history.

A ten-second Google popped that up. I'm sure you can get similar info on any PD in TN.

mgoblue101415
06-18-2010, 11:11 PM
I have to ask... How small is small?

Depending on the size, or the location of the town... A lot of small towns don't have police departments they have a sheriff's office. Or, they don't have anything actually in town but are in a sheriff's territory.

As far as training... Most around here... You need, usually at least an Associates, although more and more are looking for a 4yr degree in something like Criminal Justice or Law Enforcement. Course, I do know a few cops who didn't have the degree but were former military.

As for the academy... The police departments have their own academies, at least the ones I know in my area do. And yes, that is part of your training. It's usually about a 3-4 month program.

kaitiepaige17
06-18-2010, 11:28 PM
Okay, thanks guys. The story is set in North Carolina in a small made-up town next to the state's capital (can't spell it hahaha and don't feel like trying right now). It's small as in just a few thousand residents. Should I change it to a sheriffs department then? I envisioned the town similar in size to my own, yet we have a police department I believe...

Stanmiller
06-18-2010, 11:36 PM
Okay, thanks guys. The story is set in North Carolina in a small made-up town next to the state's capital (can't spell it hahaha and don't feel like trying right now). It's small as in just a few thousand residents. Should I change it to a sheriffs department then? I envisioned the town similar in size to my own, yet we have a police department I believe...


google nc police department hiring policy and you'll get tons of info.

mgoblue101415
06-19-2010, 12:14 AM
Okay, thanks guys. The story is set in North Carolina in a small made-up town next to the state's capital (can't spell it hahaha and don't feel like trying right now). It's small as in just a few thousand residents. Should I change it to a sheriffs department then? I envisioned the town similar in size to my own, yet we have a police department I believe...



A couple thousand population, right outside of Raleigh, probably would have a police department. It's usually the small towns in the middle of nowhere that tend not to have PDs.

And as far as the min reqs that PDs post... If you're applying with those, you're more than likely not going to be hired. Just about every PD lists HS diploma or GED as min req, but anyone with an AA/AS or higher, or military experience will be hired first.

Although, if it is a small town, and the kid's dad is a Lt... He's going to know everyone in the dept and dad's going to have more pull, so he probably could get hired without anything more than a HS diploma. He still would have to go through the department's academy, or if not an actual academy, as it is a small town, then whatever training the particular department does have. Even small town PDs have weapons training, situational training, etc.

If the town in the story is about the same size as yours... Check with your PD. Ask them what kind of training their officers go through.

kaitiepaige17
06-19-2010, 04:11 AM
Thank you guys so much. All of this really helps. I think I'm gonna stick with having a PD, and have Max have to work his way up in the ranks, then start his training. Of course, none of this it too relevant yet, so I still have time to think about it :)

RJK
06-19-2010, 06:04 PM
Most, I would guess, all states require that all police officers be state certified. This would require Academy training. Most small towns send their recruits to a central academy, probably run by the county. Your high school graduate would need to wait a few years. 21 is the minimum age for police officer. He probably could be hired as a clerk or gofer, but he would have no police authority.

jsh7777
06-21-2010, 12:38 AM
Well, you guys ain't been where I have. I've lived in or been around small country, rural towns alot in my life. (But the South, which is probably a little different universe.) Currently live in a small town with population of maybe 3000. It's also the county seat. Has one stop light at the crossroads out on the 2-lane. Because its the county seat, there is a Sheriff office. The Sherrif and about half of the force has last name of Walker. Go figure. And I can guarantee you that most have never seen the inside of the halls of academia. I bet a GED has to suffice for most, and they only got that because Billie Bob, their Uncle, said they had to so as to get a job with the County. Obtaining rank, i.e. Sergeant, Lieutenant, etc. is dependednt on who's kin you are and how well liked. Nothing more. In the outlying 'small' towns there isn't a local police deprtment. Instead, the county has a sheriff' deputy that patrols. He usually lives in the area as well. Now that I think about it - there's alot of drama and potential story matter in a small sheriffs deprtment.

SouthernFriedJulie
06-21-2010, 03:11 AM
I took the B.L.E.T. [Basic Law Enforcement Training] in NC. Offered by community colleges through the state. At the time [1995], the course had two programs, the 4 month and the 6 month.

I needed to have a clean criminal record and a G.E.D., along with a clean bill of health.

Upon presenting the above, I needed to go to the local Sheriff's Department and get sponsored.

Funny, my town was smaller than jsh7777 described, but it probably helped that the Sheriff lived on the property behind us and he hunted on our land. :-) Small town politics, hm?

Erica75
07-04-2010, 08:02 PM
One more experience, but this is in Wisconsin. My husband was a small-town cop (population about 2000). The sheriff's department runs the county program, which has jurisdiction outside of village/town limits and of unincorporated towns. Any incorporated village/town/city/etc. has its own department, usually of one chief, maybe a lieutenant, and some part-timers. Anyone on the departments need to be 21, have never been convicted of a felony, and 60 credits of college (or associates degree) along with a 400-hour (10-week) basic police training course (available at a local technical school). So, for example, my husband has a high school diploma and a bachelor's degree in criminal justice and STILL had to go to the training course and pass the final exam before he could become a part-time cop around here (for $10 an hour, btw, although it was 10 years ago). Name and reputation helps, but you have to meet minimums, and in many cases, you'll start as a "reserve" officer making $1 per shift until you have enough "training hours" in, which varies to as many as 6 months part-time. As noted above, this will vary.

Rabe
07-06-2010, 08:03 AM
This should be helpful to you:

http://www.ncdoj.gov/About-DOJ/Law-Enforcement-Training-and-Standards.aspx


By the way:

Any story I read where the Lt's kid gets hired and is loved and admired by *everyone* in the department gets thrown against the wall. Most will resent his hiring BECAUSE he is the lieutenant's kid.

Rabe...

Fern
07-06-2010, 09:29 PM
In my area a small town may have a police department and a sheriff's office. Police Dept takes care of anything in city limits and Sheriff's office takes care of outside city limits plus other small towns in the county that do not have a police department.

CLEET Training is what I see advertised as a requirement when they are trying to hire.

Around here a degree isn't required - the Sheriff and the Police Chief are voted into office.

Nuklear1
07-07-2010, 11:06 PM
Okay, thanks guys. The story is set in North Carolina in a small made-up town next to the state's capital (can't spell it hahaha and don't feel like trying right now). It's small as in just a few thousand residents. Should I change it to a sheriffs department then? I envisioned the town similar in size to my own, yet we have a police department I believe...

The town I live in has a population of about 13,000. When we moved here in 1977, the population was 5,000. At that time it had its own police and fire department. The Sheriffs department is here as well since our county seat and courthouse is here. In 1977, the two smaller communities in the county had populations of about 1200-1500. They had their own police and fire departments. Not all towns that size do. A lot of it depends upon the demographics of that area. Avg. salary per household(local taxes), state and federal funding, etc. Hope my two cents helped. :)

SomberBee
07-17-2010, 01:25 AM
Don't forget psychological evaluations...I know the big agencies require it, though even small-town PDs will, too. Speaking from experience--lived in St. Helens, Oregon, where ex-husband was a reserve copper. Then he went on to work for Portland Police, and I was a reserve there for 2 years. This was back in the '90s (a million years ago, it feels!), but I know they made the ex go through a pretty intensive psych screen. For the reserves, we didn't--good thing. I wouldn't have passed. Ha ha ha.

Sheriffs' departments (usually the county cops) and police departments (usually city/municipal) draw lines in the sand in smaller communities, i.e., they won't cross into one another's territory unless absolutely necessary or requested.

Your MC, in the state of Oregon as an example, would definitely have to go through the eight-/ten-week academy in order to work the beat. And I know these days, many departments prefer at minimum a 2-year degree, preferably 4. Your MC could likely start out as a desk clerk or even a dispatcher (although in small towns, that is usually centralized into a bigger 911 facility that handles ambulance, fire, and police), go through the academy, and then make his way into a patrol unit. Make sure to add stuff about how much crap the other guys will give him, especially if his daddy is a lieutenant. Those guys can be brutal!

Best of luck to you!