The West Virginia State Police (WVSP) is the primary law enforcement unit for the Mountain State. A distinguished public service department for over 9 decades, it is the fourth oldest state police service in the country.

Since 1919, the WVSP has served residents of this great state with bravery, honor and professionalism. If you also want to join the ranks of West Virginia’s finest, this piece outlines all the necessary information.

West Virginia State Police Eligibility Criteria

Candidates:

  • Must be at least 21 years old and at most 39 years old by the projected employment date. Applicants will be allowed to take the test at the age of 20 with the understanding that they will turn 21 by the time of joining the academy
  • Must have graduated from high school. Candidates who don’t have a high school diploma may also apply on the basis of the equivalent GED certificate
  • Must have legal authority to work in the United States
  • Must have had a valid West Virginia driver’s license for at least two years before the date of application
  • Must not have a felony or domestic violence charge against their name
  • Must not have a history of using illegal drugs
  • Must not have had a DUI (Driving Under the Influence) conviction

How Long Is Needed to Become a West Virginia Police Officer?

This will depend on the availability of vacancies with the West Virginia State Police or any other local police department in the state. After qualifying the preliminary selection process, you will have to undergo police academy training. This is normally 5 to 6 months long (the West Virginia State Police has a 25-week academy training program for its new recruits).

The whole process of becoming a West Virginia police officer, from the time of applying till the completion of the training program, is likely to take around 1.5 years (give or take a few months).

What Is the Salary of a West Virginia Police Officer?

In May, 2018, the annual mean wage of Police and Sheriff’s Patrol Officers in West Virginia was $43,590. Furthermore, according to the West Virginia State Police website, the starting annual salary of a West Virginia State Trooper is $38,524. This will increase to $45,784 upon graduation from the academy.

Job Outlook for Police Officers in West Virginia

The information available with O*Net Online projects a 9% increase in jobs for Police and Sheriff’s Patrol Officers in West Virginia during the 10 years from 2016 to 2026. So, the future looks bright for a law enforcement career in West Virginia.