Becoming a Reserve Cop

Discussions about our lives, families, jobs... things may get a little personal
Post Reply
Precision
Posts: 4581
Joined: Wed Aug 20, 2008 6:01 pm

Becoming a Reserve Cop

Post by Precision » Thu Mar 01, 2018 2:15 pm

As a few of you know, I have been trying to become a reserve cop for a while now. Dawn's cancer and the FHP directly telling me that 75% of people fail the lie detector because we use student testers, stopped it in Florida. I mean really, I am going to put in 180 hours to fail because your guy doesn't know how to run the lie detector machine?

Now in TN, a training class has opened for a local municipality.

I passed (well smoked) the PT test. Now I have to get the background check, what a nightmare of paperwork and do the interview process.

I am asking those who have gone through the process, what types of questions should I be expecting in that process. I am not terribly worried as I normally interview well, but being prepared... never hurts.
"Those who hammer their guns into plows will plow for those who do not." ~Thomas Jefferson
My little part of the blogosphere. http://blogletitburn.wordpress.com/

User avatar
Steamforger
Posts: 2784
Joined: Mon Aug 18, 2008 5:41 pm

Re: Becoming a Reserve Cop

Post by Steamforger » Thu Mar 01, 2018 3:03 pm

I never had an interview or a polygraph. A friend in the department hand carried my application to the training coordinator. If you're good on pt, focus on the other things. 10 codes and signals come easy enough, but you will likely see many of them on tests every week. Get deep into whatever system of unarmed combatives they teach (likely PPCT), as you'll use that far more than a sidearm. Develop good fundamentals while you can. Good searches, cuffing, and sound traffic stops are great focus points.

Here's the fun part. Once you start working, try to anticipate what people will do with few or no indicators. It isn't just a Jedi skill. Move around the dept. and try different stuff out. Unless you have an MD or JD we don't know about, they likely won't let you near swat or narcotics (except to make the odd buy because no one knows who you are). IMHO, the road is where it's all at anyway.

Precision
Posts: 4581
Joined: Wed Aug 20, 2008 6:01 pm

Re: Becoming a Reserve Cop

Post by Precision » Thu Mar 01, 2018 7:00 pm

Steamforger wrote:I never had an interview or a polygraph. A friend in the department hand carried my application to the training coordinator. If you're good on pt, focus on the other things. 10 codes and signals come easy enough, but you will likely see many of them on tests every week. Get deep into whatever system of unarmed combatives they teach (likely PPCT), as you'll use that far more than a sidearm. Develop good fundamentals while you can. Good searches, cuffing, and sound traffic stops are great focus points.

Here's the fun part. Once you start working, try to anticipate what people will do with few or no indicators. It isn't just a Jedi skill. Move around the dept. and try different stuff out. Unless you have an MD or JD we don't know about, they likely won't let you near swat or narcotics (except to make the odd buy because no one knows who you are). IMHO, the road is where it's all at anyway.
I am going to take the classes they require and smoke them. Some more than others, but I am a smart guy and test well.
Not trying to be the once a month SWAT guy, narcotics is NOT a goal either. As reserves we are fill ins, overflow at big crowd events and the like. We can get to the point of being ZERO difference from paid guys in about 2 years, but still we are mostly fill ins for vacation and big events.

My reasons for doing this are :
not having served in the Military and I regret that. So this is a way I can serve
50 state carry reciprocity

Doing this will scratch both itches and I think I will enjoy it.
"Those who hammer their guns into plows will plow for those who do not." ~Thomas Jefferson
My little part of the blogosphere. http://blogletitburn.wordpress.com/

User avatar
Steamforger
Posts: 2784
Joined: Mon Aug 18, 2008 5:41 pm

Re: Becoming a Reserve Cop

Post by Steamforger » Thu Mar 01, 2018 9:04 pm

I was often on my own after my first year.

It's the best free education you can get on the Human condition.

ETA- you may start as a fill in and there will likely be some mandatory events you'll have to work, but once your shift gets to know you as a solid guy in a pinch, a lot of that stuff drops off your radar. High school football games and local festivals where were we started. I don't think I worked a football game in my last 4 years I held a commission. Can't get away from the festivals though...

User avatar
randy
Posts: 7369
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2008 11:33 pm
Location: EM79VQ

Re: Becoming a Reserve Cop

Post by randy » Thu Mar 01, 2018 9:54 pm

I've gone through several polygraphs and the process varied depending on the department (and it's been over 20 years).

Most had a questionnaire you filled out, covering what you would expect (criminal history, drug use, etc.)

The actual machine time started out asking if you were truthful in your answers. They would then drill down on any questions that raised a flag (Q: have you ever stolen anything? my ans: Yes, I shoplifted a trinket when I was 10 years old, wasn't caught, feel bad about it and never did it again). Then a question if you were concealing anything not on the questionnaire.

Several departments seemed to have a set of stock questions unrelated to the questionnaire. I found it interesting because I think it gave me a sense of areas that department had had problems with recently, Examples: Public sex acts; Excessive gambling; Falsifying official documents.

I didn't have any issues because I told the truth (10 years with a TS/SBI and "cleared for weird", you guys ain't finding nothing new). That and I was relaxed because I consider polygraphs BS anyway, especially after going through SERE training.

(side note: one guy was being a dick and ticked me off, so when he asked "have you ever broken a law and not been caught" I stated yes. When he asked for details I informed him I had violated the Espionage laws of the Soviet Union, Cuba, North Korea and Red China. I had also engaged in counter-revolutionary activities and was an accessory to the pre-meditated homicides of several Iraqi military and intelligence officials. I don't know which pissed him more, my attitude or the fact the machine told him I was being truthful. :twisted: )
...even before I read MHI, my response to seeing a poster for the stars of the latest Twilight movies was "I see 2 targets and a collaborator".

User avatar
Steamforger
Posts: 2784
Joined: Mon Aug 18, 2008 5:41 pm

Re: Becoming a Reserve Cop

Post by Steamforger » Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:50 am

Incidentally, most people I went through with who hired into departments full time failed their psych evals that were part of the hiring process. You didn't mention a psych evaluation, but they may do one. It was so predictable that it became this big joke. Everyone was crazy the first time around.

The shrink was able to double bill if you failed the first one and they scheduled a follow up.

Post Reply