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To become a police patrol officer do you have to go through training?

I am wondering if I would have to go through police training such as a police academy, or if the security, and advanced security, through job corp would be sufficient.

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David’s Answer

You have to go through training to become a police officer or deputy sheriff, although this training varies from state to state. North Carolina requires 632 hours of training, called Basic Law Enforcement Training (BLET). This includes approximately 40 blocks of instruction, including firearms, driving, subject control & arrest techniques, dealing with people with mental illness, domestic response, etc. You also must complete the Police Officers Physical Abilities Test (POPAT) to graduate. Some agencies, such as the North Carolina State Highway Patrol and Raleigh Police Department, require significantly more training (NC SHP academy is 27-28 weeks long, with RPD's academy being 11 months).

South Carolina requires approximately half that amount of training, but this may have changed since the last time I spoke to an officer from there.
Thank you comment icon Thank you for taking the time to help. Marquessa
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Michelle’s Answer

Great questions. To become a police officer, most jurisdictions require your high school diploma or a GED. Meeting certain requirements through a physical and written exam are necessary, but this is after the initial application process, which does take some time. Some places have waiting lists to get into police academies. In our agency, it is required that before becoming a Deputy, you must be a Detention Officer first. So applicants go through the DO academy first, then usually work in our detention facilities (county jails) for a couple of years. Then they go through a request or application to become a law enforcement officer (Deputy). Again, there is a waiting list and process for that.
Typically the academies are about 6 to 8 weeks in length, and it physically demanding. Not only are there classes on law, and physical agility, but we also provide crime scene processing, fingerprinting and dealing with mental health issues and intoxicated individuals. You learn to subdue rowdy individuals, deal with injured individuals and first aid applications.
So not all of the time is spent running around and doing exercises. At both academies, you should learn how to handle, care and discharge a weapon safely. Both can be satisfying professions. But like someone else answered, the training never stops. There are requirements in ethics, discrimination and sexual harassment that are annually, as well as many required hours of legal courses, weapons training and first aid that are necessary to protect the officers and the public. Other courses that are necessary to promote up to Detective, Sergeants, Lieutenants, Commanders, etc. All law enforcement, including the Detention Offiers, must take minimum required hours each year or every other year. Even civilian staff have required training. This helps us learn new techniques, new ways of doing tasks that need to be changed due to the situations that come up all the time with safety for the officers and public.

I hope I was able to answer your questions in more depth. Be sure to ask your local police or sheriff's departments what their requirements are. But most law enforcement positions and jobs as officers, require academies and continuing educational development or training.

Best of luck to you.
Thank you comment icon Your advice was so helpful! Marquessa
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Sikawayi’s Answer

Hello Marquessa, yes you do have to through training not just to become a patrol officer, but you have to go through training during the year to continue to stay on your post.
Thank you comment icon Thank you! Marquessa
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Harold’s Answer

There are many hours of training to become a police officer. The number of hours depends on the state in which you will serve. There will also many hours of training throughout your career to remain certified. I always say, "you can't not never have enough training!" Good luck. 👍
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Abolade’s Answer

Absolutely training does much in becoming a professional. Policing is sensitive and requires adequate mental and physical trainings.
Thank you comment icon Thank you for taking the time to help. Marquessa
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