The State of Colorado regulates Police Officers through a division of the State's Attorney General's Office. The Peace Officer Standards and Training (P.O.S.T.) regulates all Police Academies and certified peace officers in the state. Find a list of requirements.
The APD has, for decades, maintained an exhaustive recruiting, background investigation, and hiring system. In addition, all of our incoming officers hold a four-year college degree, which helps ensure our sworn employees have the maturity needed to implement APD's sophisticated community policing strategies. The degree requirement is only required by 1% of the nation's law enforcement agencies.
View the USA Today article on degree benefits.
- Each candidate completes a lengthy personal history questionnaire during the hiring process.
- Each candidate must pass a written exam.
- The next step is an in-person, panel interview process. The panel is comprised of veteran officers within the department.
- Candidates who are chosen to move forward must take a polygraph examination, administered by one of two police department polygraphers.
- Candidates who pass the polygraph may receive a conditional job offer.
- At this point, the candidate's application is assigned to a trained background investigator.
- Once the investigator has interviewed current/previous employers, references, family, friends and co-workers, candidates are scheduled for a final interview with the Chief of Police.
- Successful candidates then attend the 20-week long police academy, where many of our officers are instructors.
- Upon graduation, cadets begin a 17-week Field Training Program (F.T.O.).
- If the candidate successfully completes the F.T.O. program, they are a probationary employee through the first full year with the City of Arvada Police Department.
Our overall training programs are second to none. Our personnel are regularly trained in everything from the legal aspects of policing, to ethical obligations surrounding the use of force, to effective de-escalation techniques. We utilize a robust "early warning system" to alert us to questionable conduct by our officers, and we hold them accountable for conduct that does not meet our high standards.
In our latest hiring process, the Arvada Police Department received more than 200 applications; only four individuals received a conditional employment offer based on our stringent guidelines.
Information about police recruiting can be found on Arvada Built Blue