Virginia has a huge police force comprising of 18,000 sworn officers to ensure safety of every resident of the state. The various police departments across the state employ their own individual law enforcement personnel to keep local communities, residents and visitors safe. Therefore, to become a Virginia state police officer, you will need to follow a strict set of guidelines.

Requirements for becoming a Virginia Police Officer

To become a Virginia state police officer, you will need to fulfill the following basic requirements:

  • Candidates should be at least 18 years old.
  • They must have a high school diploma or a GED.
  • They should be US citizens.
  • Candidates must have a valid driver’s license.
  • Candidates ought to have no convicted felonies on their record.
How to become a police officer in Virginia
How to become a police officer in Virginia

Academic Paths for Police Officers in Virginia

If you intend to become a police officer in Virginia, you can follow these educational paths:

  • Vocational/Trade Schools.
  • Military Experience.
  • Community Colleges.
  • Law Enforcement Schools.
  • 4-Year Colleges.

Virginia Police Departments

The state of Virginia has multiple police departments, including the following:

  1. Mount Jackson Police Department.
  2. Fairfax County Police Department.
  3. Henrico County Police Department.
  4. Richmond Police Department.
  5. Winchester Police Department.
  6. Vienna Police Department.
  7. Salem City Sheriff’s Office.
  8. Herndon Police Department.

For a complete listing of the Police Departments in the state, you may visit the official Virginia State Police website.

Virginia Police Training Academies

Virginia is home to 10 police training academies. These are:

  1. Hampton Roads Criminal Justice Training Academy – Newport News, VA
  2. Rappahannock Regional Criminal Justice Academy – Fredericksburg, VA
  3. Crater Criminal Justice Training Academy – Disputanta, VA
  4. Piedmont Regional Criminal Justice Training Academy – Martinsville, VA
  5. Commonwealth Criminal Justice Academy – Fredericksburg, VA
  6. Central Virginia Criminal Justice Academy – Lynchburg, VA
  7. Cardinal Criminal Justice Academy – Salem, VA
  8. Central Shenandoah Criminal Justice Academy – Weyers Cave, VA
  9. Southwest Virginia Criminal Justice Training Academy – Bristol, VA
  10. Fairfax County Criminal Justice Academy – Chantilly, VA

Virginia Highway Patrol Officers or Troopers Requirements

If you want to become Highway Patrol Officers or State Troopers in Virginia, then the requirements are nearly the same as those for becoming police officers. The exact requirements may vary in different parts of the state, but in most cases, the following general requirements would be applicable:

  • Candidates should be residents of Virginia.
  • Candidates should be at least 21 years old.
  • Candidates ought to have a GED or a high school diploma.
  • Candidates should be US citizens.
  • Candidates need to possess a clean driving record and a valid driver’s license.

Virginia Deputy Sheriff Requirements

The requirements to become a Virginia Deputy Sheriff are more or less the same as those for other positions. The minimum age requirement is 21 and the minimum education requirement is a GED or a high school diploma. Candidates should be citizens of the US. The duties of a deputy sheriff will mostly involve working in the Detention Center or providing security services at the local courthouse.

Employment and Salary for Virginia Sheriff’s Patrol and Police Officers

Virginia has one of the highest employment levels for Police and Sheriff’s Patrol Officers in the US with nearly 18,700 officers. The annual mean wage for this category is $56,290 in the state of Virginia.