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Careers: Police/following a dream


I have wanted to be a police officer for a while and eventually i want to become a detective. When i was a little younger, i got arrested for petty theft. I have also been drinking underage. Will this disqualify me from following my dream and becoming a police officer?

Hello Kayla,
In a generalized response....a moment of youthful indiscretion, and poor judgement will not usually disqualify you.
If a pattern develops, it would suggest many things: does not learn lessons, immature, poor judgement and decision making process, etc.
You'll want to be honest if questioned, as honesty and truthfulness are corner stones to character, which is a quality being sought.

Remember, polygraph questions tend to be based on oral interview and responses to written applications.

Most areas seal juvenile records, unless certified as an adult, which is not your situation...or, to impeach an affidavit...which could be something you want to embrace..

Forget about the "dream", and focus on the preparation, as competition is keen, and the applicants who can pony up the best/most KSA's (knowledge-skill-ability) is usually favored.
I suggest courses on written and oral communications...
Being able to be an effective speaker, and to craft a comprehensive report is a noticeable skill set...
Exercise the law of parsimony...i.e., use language economy, necessary, but not wordy.

The temptation, will be to take police courses...
Although these may be interesting, I think my counsel would be to concentrate on the issue at hand....being competitive, and an attractive candidate at the hiring stage.

Mostly, on youthful stupidity, you had a lot of company...
I'd include the reality that you learned from past mistakes, and also take responsibility for errors in past behavior.

Hope this is helpful.
Good Luck,
Semper Fi,

Careers: Police

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Loren Stevens


Retired after 31 years in a large metropolitan PD. Areas of expertise: COVERT OPERATIONS. Management, Administration, Inspections, U/C development, Project design, Ethics, and other related sub topics in COVERT OPERATIONS.


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