Can I Still Be A Cop If I've Been Arrested?

The simple answer is yes and no.

Arrest Disqualification

Each state will have a list of offenses that will prevent an individual from becoming an officer. These are the general minimum qualifications for all departments within a state.

 

However, each city or county law enforcement agency can also have more strict disqualifiers than those set by the state.

So you need to check the requirements for each agency you are interested in. If something is disqualifying you at one department, you may find another agency that will accept you. It can be a lot of work but worth it in the long run.

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Time From Incident

Another factor that is involved with arrests that aren't disqualifiers is the time period from the date of conviction to the date of application.

For instance, a DUI may not be an automatic disqualifier, but a department may say that you need to wait 5 years from the conviction before you can apply.

This is also common with drug use and suspended/ revoked driver's licenses.