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Thread: Should I apply to be a Police Officer again?

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    Ryan701's Avatar
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    Should I apply to be a Police Officer again?

    Hello Everyone,

    I know I haven't been on here for awhile, but I have been busy trying to get my career going in Law Enforcement. I had recently applied at our local Sheriff's Department and made it to backgrounds. I was really excited, because I had never been this far in the process. After all was said and done I was contacted by my Background Investigator who told me that I was disqualified from the position due to my background, but she wanted to offer me the chance to interview for a different position. I know that no one here really knows me, but I feel that I have nothing wrong in my background.

    My question is, should I continue to apply for sworn Law Enforcement positions or am I done for? I would assume that my background can't be that bad if my Background Investigator is offering me the opportunity to interview for a non-sworn Law Enforcement position?

    Any feedback is greatly appreciated. Thank you!

    Ryan

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    Jim1348 is offline Rookie
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    Should I Apply To Be A Police Officer Again?

    Go for the non-sworn position then.
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    Jks9199 is online now The Reason People Hate Cops & Causer of War
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    The non-sworn position will get you in the door. Without knowing why they disqualified you, it could be anything like not enough life experience, too many tickets or a major ticket too recently, something someone said about you (like you have loud parties), they don't like your credit history, they want college and you don't have it... to that nagging felony conviction that you haven't mentioned . Might even just be that they're processing the top 10 candidates further -- and you happened to be number 11 -- or some of your references didn't bother to return calls promptly.

    I'd also encourage you to ask for a little more information. The investigator may not be able to give you all the details, but may be able to give you enough to know whether it's a major problem, something that'll take time to solve, or just not your time this go-around.

    And do apply other places. Some things that are disqualifiers with one agency are just something that requires an explanation at another, and not even a bump to a third...
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    Xiphos's Avatar
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    Were you disqualified because you lack experience or job stability? Or because you did something you shouldn't have?

    If it's the first you can take the job and reapply when appropriate.

    It it's the second, usually it only disqualifies you for a set amount of time. Like after 5 years marijuana use no longer disqualifies you in some places.

    Either way really you can take the job and work until you are able to be hired in a sworn position. Working for the SO gives you the chance to show them you are a hard worker and will help make you more competitive next time around.

    Also, getting hired in this job is often a test of how much you want it. Many of us faced several rejections before getting the job we're in now. We also applied all over at once and took the first job offer we got. Sometimes what's important to one department isn't so important to another.

    Whatever you do, good luck.
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    Ryan701's Avatar
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    Thanks Jks and Xiphos! I do lack experience in the Law Enforcement field, but I feel that my current and previous jobs can relate to Law Enforcement. As far as my employment history goes, my first job I had for 4 years, my second job was for 7 years, and I have been at my current job for a little over a year so far. I was never fired from any of my previous jobs. I have never done drugs, I don't drink but maybe five or six times a year, and I have had one speeding ticket since I've had my license 13 years ago. Unfortunately, the Sheriff's Department can't tell me why I was disqualified, but your replies give me hope. Thank you!

    Thanks again!

    Ryan
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    Keep trying. I was once an "insider" at our S.O., and they can disqualify you if the sheriff's aunts third cousin doesn't like you! You persistence will pay off, unless there's something you're trying to hide!
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    berserk is offline The reason they do psych evals
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    People get disqualified for minor stuff and go on to work at other agencies all the time. Backgrounds is a finicky process.

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    Try for the non-sworn and apply else where for sworn. What Keith said is very true!
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    Ryan701's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone! This gives me lots of hope to keep applying. Someone else I spoke with said that once I was disqualified from background that basically no other agency would pick me up. I'm going to go for the non-sworn position for now, and keep applying at other agencies.

    If anybody else has anymore comments or knowledge on the matter, I welcome it. I'm not trying to hide anything and was actually shy about some of the things I told my Background Investigator. I plan to contact her this week to see if there's anything that she can tell me.

    Thanks again!

    Ryan
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  10. #10
    Policefan1978 is offline Officer First Class
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    Good luck Ryan.
    May God be with you and your families as you Protect and Serve.

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    Get a map, mark those places where you would like to work and go apply (sworn or non-sworn). Keep copies of all your applications. Keep at it, don't quit, something will come up that you will find a good-fit. Some just take a while longer. Good luck to you!!
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    Keep trying, I applied 3 times before I was hired here and I just started my 33rd year. The guy hired with me had applied 5 times before he was hired and he retired after 28 years. Keep trying, and as sgtbear111 said try applying at other places. By all means accept the non-sworn position as offered, I'm sure working at a non-sworn LE job will only help in the application process. Good luck.
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    If you have to ask, I get the impression you don't want it bad enough. If that's the case, go be a Firefighter.
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    Jks9199 is online now The Reason People Hate Cops & Causer of War
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rhino View Post
    If you have to ask, I get the impression you don't want it bad enough. If that's the case, go be a Firefighter.
    There's some truth here...
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    Xiphos's Avatar
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    I thought the OP was pretty clear he thought the dq is permanent and would always inhibit his apps. Be was obviously ignorant of how this works and seems to be happy he can keep applying. You guys need to lighten up.
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    Pleasing nobody, one person at a time.

    That which does not kill me, better start fucking running.

    If I lived every day like it was my last, the body count would be staggering.

    I intend to go in harm's way. -John Paul Jones

    Hunt the wolf, and bring light to the dark places that others fear to go. LT COL Dave Grossman

  16. #16
    Ryan701's Avatar
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    Yes Xiphos, you are correct. I did speak with my BG Investigator and she said that it is not certain that this will hurt my chances to apply at another agency. She also said that HR is getting involved with the other civilian position being offered which is causing a longer wait time before I can interview for that position.

    I have been looking into going back to school part-time. Is this a good idea? Should I study Criminal Justice, or choose another major?

    Thanks for all the help!

  17. #17
    Xiphos's Avatar
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    Study something useful like business or public administration. All departments will care about is that you have a degree. They'll teach you criminal justice in the academy. If you get a criminal justice degree and because of health or injuries you can't be a cop your CJ degree won't be really helpful to you. Business or administration will open doors in promotion to higher ranks too. My lieutenants and captains got MBA's or administration degrees to get promoted higher.
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    Pleasing nobody, one person at a time.

    That which does not kill me, better start fucking running.

    If I lived every day like it was my last, the body count would be staggering.

    I intend to go in harm's way. -John Paul Jones

    Hunt the wolf, and bring light to the dark places that others fear to go. LT COL Dave Grossman

  18. #18
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    I was dqed from an agency because my credit score of 692 was below their minimum. Like has been already mentioned, what is a dq for some agencies may not be an issue for others.
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    When I first started applying for dept's, I only applied for 2 different dept's. After a while of trying these two dept's a few times and getting rejected each time, I started to get burnt out on it and started thinking that it just wasn't going to happen. I went for a period of about a year and a half where I didn't apply anywhere. Then my buddy Jason got killed in the line of duty. That made me realize that if I really wanted to do this for a career, I needed to get serious about it and really go after it. And if I didn't want it bad enough to go after it like that, then it would be time to let it be and try for a different career. I chose the first option and started applying all over my state, having several active applications going at the same time. It felt like I was constantly travelling around to the different hiring process steps at different places. But it was during this blitz of applications that I got hired on my current dept. I have now been here for 10.5 years and just got a K9 spot. All in all, by the time I got hired, I had put in 17 different applications over the course of 5 years (11 different dept's). If you really want this career, then you keep trying! And remember that it's harder to get hired now than when I got hired. Many departments are lowering their numbers of officers rather than raising them. Keep looking at your future options in terms of if they will help you move towards your goal of becoming a cop or not. Getting a degree will be a plus. Military service helps. If you don't want to enlist in the Army/Navy/Air Force/Marines, try the National Guard. Also look at trying out the corrections field as a possible stepping stone. Take CPR/First Aid courses. If there really is something in your background that they don't like right now, add things to your background that they will like. Make yourself become a very desirable candidate for dept's. And of course most of all, DON'T let yourself do anything that will poorly reflect on you or become a possible disqualifier for you.
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  20. #20
    Ryan701's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone! I've decided to apply at another agency for now. I have passed the written and physical ability tests. I am now just waiting to do my oral board interview. Hopefully everything goes well this time around. Thanks again for everyones input, and if you have anymore ideas please keep them coming.

    Ryan
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