How to Become a Police Officer in Arkansas?
Even though life in Arkansas is safer than that in many other states, there are incidences that require serious attention. According to a recent study published by CBS News, the aggravated assault rate in Little Rock, Arkansas outpaced the national average in 2017. There were 1,266 aggravated assaults per 100,000 residents in the city – more than 5 times the national rate for the year! With such alarming numbers, it comes as no surprise that the state is always looking for new and ambitious law enforcement personnel to help in crime fighting. If you want to contribute towards making Arkansas a safe place to live, the following information on how to become a police officer in Arkansas would be of use to you.
If you are interested in joining the police force in Arkansas, you need to clear some steps. These steps would vary according to city, jurisdiction or police department. Make sure you check the requirements in your area before beginning the application procedure.
- Meet the Basic Qualification criteria (discussed later)
- Submit the application
- Clear the Civil Service Test
- Pass the Physical Fitness Test
- Give the required interviews (conducted by police officers from the department)
- Clear the background investigation
- Give interviews with the relevant police department (conducted by administrators from the police department)
- Pass the physical and psychological exams
- Attend police academy for training
Before you initiate the application process for becoming a police officer in Arkansas, it is important that you are aware of the following eligibility criteria:
- Candidate must be at least 18 years of age
- Candidate should be a resident of the state of Arkansas, either by birth or through naturalization
- Candidate should have at least a high school diploma or a GED
- Candidate should possess a valid drivers’ license
- Candidate should not have any felony convictions in Arkansas or any other state
Bear in mind that this criteria is also subject to change according to city and specific police departments. So be sure to check the details for the area you are applying in.
How long does it take to become a Police Officer in Arkansas?
It may take approximately 1.5 to 2 years for you to become a police officer in Arkansas. This time includes the application process and the 6 months of police training that follows in case you are selected. Specific police departments might have their own training program requirements, but by and large, it takes around 6-8 months to complete the course.
How much does a Police Officer make in Arkansas?
The annual mean wage for Police and Sheriff’s Patrol Officers in Arkansas is $39,560, as per May 2018 data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. The state currently has 6,030 people employed in this category.