What are the Requirements for becoming a Police Officer in Utah?
Most people would have dreamt about being a police officer during their childhood. The job of a police officer in law enforcement is a highly respectable job and it has authority and involves the responsibility of keeping a city safe. Working as a police officer is a good career option that is challenging, as well as rewarding. Police offers are responsible for maintaining law and order, traffic, and solving crimes.
In the state of Utah, one can look forward to working as a police officer with the police department in a major city in the state. At the local level, police officers are referred to as peace officers. A police job in the counties in Utah would be as a Deputy Sheriff.
In Utah, POST is the Peace Officer Standards and Training Council. This is the body responsible for setting standards and providing training for law enforcement officers. POST also is responsible for defining the minimum requirements to become a police or peace officer.
Utah Police Academy Requirements
In the state of Utah, POST has defined the following requirements to become a peace officer.
- The applicant must be over 21 years of age.
- Must be a US citizen.
- The applicant must have completed a high school diploma or a GED.
- No felonies should have been committed by the applicant.
- If worked for the military, should not have faced a dishonorable discharge.
- Should be of good moral character that can be verified through a background check.
These are the minimum requirements defined to be a police officer. Different agencies can have their own additional requirements over and above these.
Process of hiring
In Utah, to be a police officer, the applicant who meets the requirements need to complete the following:
- Background check
- Physical agility test
- Medical examination
- Psychological evaluation
Most law enforcement agencies have a written examination to select police officers. The written exam would test the applicant’s reading abilities, writing skills, and logic skills.
On clearing this written exam and meeting all the requirements, the applicant can be selected to be a police officer. On being selected as a police officer, he/she should attend police training before being able to commence duty.
Utah Trooper Requirements
The Utah Highway Patrol department hires troopers who are police officers who protect travelers by enforcing traffic rules and also taking care of law and order in the highways. To become a trooper, the additional requirements (apart from the POST requirements) are:
- Must have a driving record without any violations or convictions.
- Must not have any tattoos that are visible while wearing a uniform.
- Must not have committed any crimes within the past four years.
- Must not have a record of drug use within the past five years.
- Must not be facing misdemeanor or domestic violence charges.
Recruitment for the Utah police department
The major cities in Utah like Salt Lake City, West Valley City would look for additional requirements like having a driving license and they would have an interview prior to selection. West Valley City gives preference to those who have a college degree and military experience.
On completion of recruitment, the selected candidates undergo training at police academies. POST has an academy in Sandy where training is conducted for new recruits before they can be posted as officers. There are also satellite police training programs at academies in college campuses.
In the state of Utah, a police officer earns an average salary of around $50,000. This would vary depending on the place of work. It is expected that there would be a 23% growth in police jobs in the state by 2026.