If you are looking to become a municipal police officer in Missouri, be prepared to pay your own way for basic academy training. In Missouri, peace officers must be licensed by the Missouri Peace Officers Standards and Training Commission (POST).
Most departments require that you obtain that license before being hired and in order to get the license you complete mandatory basic training that is given at police academies and licensed colleges and universities around the state.
Police Academy Requirements in Missouri
Enrolling in one of these schools is the first step to take on the path to becoming a peace officer in Missouri. You can find a list of these schools on the POST web site here.
The basic training curriculum will be between 400 and 600 hours, depending on the academy or institution chosen. It generally will be around 25 weeks. By state mandate part of the training will be 30 hours in the investigation and management of cases involving domestic and family violence.
A good site to look at to learn more about the examination process is this one.
Minimum Requirements & Qualifications
There also are eligibility requirements to meet in order to be licensed. In Missouri they include:
- A minimum age of 21 upon graduating from a basic training academy
- U.S. citizenship
- A high school diploma or GED equivalent
- A minimum of 60 college credit hours or two year’s active duty military service with an honorable discharge
- Passing the Missouri Peace Officer License Exam
- No criminal history that includes a felony conviction.
- Good character, with no crime involving moral turpitude, no pending indictments, or certain misdemeanor offenses including any involving aggressive or violent behavior (i.e., domestic violence, criminal assault, etc.), disregard for the safety of others, or the misuse of deadly weapons.
- Be free of objectionable tattoos/brands. No tattoos/brands are permitted on the head, neck, hands, or below the upper six-inch portion of the arm.
- Be willing to live anywhere in the State of Missouri.
- Possess a valid Missouri Driver License at the time of appointment.
- Possess ordinary physical strength.
- Pass the physical and mental examinations prescribed by the superintendent.
The Hiring Process & Application Standards
If the minimum standards are met, the selection process to become a police officer is this:
- Pass a written exam
- Undergo a fitness for duty assessment
- Pass a polygraph and background investigation
- Undergo an oral interview by a board
Once these steps are completed, a candidate may receive a conditional offer of employment. However, they still have to pass:
- Psychological exam
- Psychological interview
- Medical exam
- Vision and hearing exam
- Drug screening
Only after successfully completing these final steps can the final offer of employment be made by the police agency.
Police Officer Salary – Average Cop Pay in Missouri
According to the Bureau Of Labor Statistics (2010), a police officer in the state of Missouri makes between $43,400 – $48,120 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 MO.
Police Officer Jobs in MO
There are several law enforcement job openings in Missouri. 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 Missouri.
Saint Joseph Police Department