Steps to Become a Police Officer in Mississippi
In Mississippi, persons looking to become municipal police officers must complete a 10-week, 400-hour basic training program within two years of the date of hire by a police force. In order to be hired in the first place, they must meet certain minimum standards and pass a physical fitness test.
Requirements & Qualifications
The basic standards begin with a minimum age of 21 and include having a high school diploma or GED equivalent. In lieu of a GED, applicants may provide a standardized ACT test score of 15 or higher. All candidates must be U.S. citizens, of good physical and mental condition and moral character.
A felony conviction or a misdemeanor for a crime of moral turpitude will disqualify candidates. A rigorous background investigation will be conducted to look for any possible criminal activity or convictions, or drug use. All candidates for police officer positions must pass a written test given by the State Personnel Board, and pass a personal background investigation before being enrolled in a basic academy training program.
In addition to criminal history and drug use, the background investigation will probe such things as military history, financial and bankruptcy record, employment history and whether the candidate has been suspended for any reason or terminated from a job, alcohol use or addiction.
All candidates will be fingerprinted and the fingerprints sent to the Criminal Information Center of the Mississippi Department of Public Safety as part of the background investigation.
Mississippi Police Academy Requirements
The 10-week basic training program include training in Police knowledge, Criminal Investigation, Traffic, Police Skills, Courtroom Testimony, Firearms, First Aid and Driver Training. Passing grades of between 70% and 80%, depending on the subject matter, must be achieved in order to graduate.
Physical Fitness Test Standards
The physical fitness test also must be taken and passed before graduating. It consists of a demonstration of flexibility, an agility test through a timed obstacle course, timed push-ups and a timed 1.5-mile run. These tests are administered three times during the 10-week program to give recruits several opportunities to pass each of the sections.
All police officers in the state are certified by the Board of Law Enforcement Officer Standards and Training (BLEOST). The agency’s web site can be found here. Police officers must achieve certification to remain as a duly sworn officer with authority to bear arms and make arrests.
Mississippi has published a comprehensive manual on all of the requirements to become a police officer in the state. It can be accessed here.
Police Officer Salary – Average Cop Pay in Mississippi
According to the Bureau Of Labor Statistics (2010), a police officer in the state of Mississippi makes between $27,060 – $38,820 per year. However the data collected by BLS aren’t very accurate because it does not record overtime pay or off duty work. These two factors, if included in the data, would increase the average salary of a police officer in MS.
Police Officer Jobs in MS
There are several law enforcement job openings in Mississippi. Simply visit our Career Job Opening or go to the official website of the agency you are interested in to complete an application of employment. Below is a list of all the law enforcement agencies in the state of Mississippi.
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