Careers: Police/Background Check

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Question
Hello,

I am soon to be a college graduate with certifications as a correctional officer and law enforcement. I also have 3 years experience as a correctional officer. I want to become a state trooper, however I have some concerns. I have been suspended for sleeping on post (perimeter fencing roving), after switching from day shift to midnight shift (it happened a couple of days after I was assigned to the shift and it was very challenging to stay awake). This is the only disciplinary action in 6 years of working. It is not a true indication of who I am. Will the agency know about this if they conduct a background investigation? Will I be automatically disqualified? My employers all have great things to say about me including my Sergeant. I really want to be a trooper and I am afraid that I will not be able because of one mistake; I have been disqualified before for admitting this. What should I say? Please give me some insight.

Answer
Brian,

There is no way for me to know what any particular agency would do with this information.  They all operate differently, have different background investigators, and have different standards.

I would think that the oral interview part would come before the background investigation so you would get your chance to explain about what happened.

There is no way that I am going to tell you what to say.  If I did you could blame the whole thing on me afterwards.  But yes, they will know about your suspension.

The  best that I can do for you is to tell you that your disciplinary record surely won't help you.  ON the other hand it might not hurt you.

Careers: Police

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Jack Toomey

Expertise

If you are an author I will be happy to help you however I do expect a reasonable donation using the PayPal icon. U.S.: I am an expert in this category for the purpose of giving young people an idea what the hiring process involves for the position of police officer. I am getting a flood of questions from young people who are being influenced by unrealistic television shows. I'd ask you to consider that when you watch police shows on television that they are NOT realistic and most of what you see does not happen in real life. Please do not ask me about potential jail sentences that you, your friends, or family might receive in court. There is no way for me to know that. I am NOT a probation officer so I cannot answer questions about probation and parole matters. I am a retired police officer with 26 years experience.I worked in a variety of assignments including investigations, homicide, sex crimes, runaway investigations, missing persons, and fraud.I also dealt with the general public during that time giving a wide range of advice on matters such as domestic disputes, problem solving, teenage problems, civil/criminal matters, and dealing with the mentally ill. I am available to give sound and reasonable advice which can solve most problems. Please do not ask me to do homework questions or online interviews. Young people should not rely on the Internet for interviews. Local police officers are normally very agreeable to assist students with interviews and surveys.

Experience

Worked as a police officer/detective for 26 years.

Graduate of the University of Maryland.B.S. in Law Enforcement.Attended numerous schools and training courses involving investigations, interviewing, interrogations, crime detection, domestic violence, and others. Recognized in court as an expert witness.

Received numerous awards during my police career for expert investigations. Handled the most sensitive and confidential investigations. In 1999 I won an award for my work with high school students while working in my new career in a large suburban high school.

Education/Credentials
B.S from the University of Maryland.

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