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Law Enforcement Careers in Ohio

Those who wish to have a law enforcement career in Ohio have a wealth of options, ranging from jobs as State Troopers to positions as Sheriff’s Deputies for the county. Those interested in serving local PDs in Ohio pursue training to become a Police Officer.

Jobs with the Ohio State Highway Patrol

The Ohio State Highway Patrol is responsible for enforcing traffic and criminal laws on the public roads and on property owned or leased by the state.  In 2012, Highway Patrol Officers made nearly 52,000 enforcement stops, investigated over 8200 crashes, and provided assistance to over 34,000 motorists.

The multiple highways that transect Ohio are major distribution routes for a number of different illegal drugs.  The Ohio State Highway Patrol is targeting this distribution by checking for suspicious activity during its routine traffic stops and coordinating information between its Office of Investigative Service and Criminal Intelligence Units.  In 2011, State Troopers had 1.4 million contacts with motorists and made over 6000 drug arrests.

To obtain jobs as State Troopers in Ohio, applicants must be 20-34 years old and have a high school diploma or GED.  They will undergo a thorough background check and physical examination. Applicants must have uncorrected vision that is at least 20/125 in each eye. This selection process normally takes two months.  Read more information about how to become a State Trooper in Ohio.

Jobs with Sheriff’s Departments in Ohio

In unincorporated parts of Ohio, law enforcement jobs are available as Sheriff’s Deputies.

 

Cuyahoga County:  A high priority of the Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Department is combating an increase in drug related crimes.  The dedicated Narcotics unit has personnel working round the clock along with five highly trained dogs in its K9 Unit, including dogs trained to detect explosives.

Franklin County:  The Investigations Division of the Franklin County Sheriff’s Department has a Bomb Squad, SWAT Team, and a Hostage Negotiation unit.  The Patrol Division includes mounted and bicycle patrols, along with a marine rescue/dive group.

To obtain jobs as Deputy Sheriffs in Franklin County, applicants must have a high school diploma or possess a GED and be at least 18 years old.  Applicants who pass a pre-employment exam are invited to fill out an application and then go through a rigorous background investigation.

Summit County:  Northern Ohio has been designated as a High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA), and the Summit County Sheriff’s Department is part of the Summit County Drug Unit.  One of the many specialties of this department is internet crimes, and there is a dedicated position for investigating such crimes.

Jobs with Municipal Police Departments in Ohio

The large number of cities in Ohio provides job opportunities for those who wish to have a career as a Police Officer in Ohio.  Details about the largest police departments in Ohio follow:

Akron:  Akron has one of the highest rates of violent crime in the country, and the 123 sworn members in the Investigative Subdivision of The Akron Police Department work to fight this trend.  Akron Police Officers work in a variety of units of this subdivision, including Crimes Against Persons/Major Crimes, Crimes Against Property, Juvenile/Auto Theft/Missing Persons Unit, Narcotics, Crime Scene, and Polygraph.

Cincinnati: Cincinnati has a very high rate of both violent and property crimes.  To fight this trend, the City of Cincinnati Police Department employs over 1000 sworn law enforcement officers.   To obtain jobs as Police Officers in Cincinnati, applicants must be 21 years old and have a high school diploma or GED.  Those who have a college background are preferred.

Cleveland: The city of Cleveland has one of the highest rates of crime in the U.S., and Police Officers in Cleveland are active in the community and encourage Neighborhood Watch Programs.  To obtain jobs as Police Officers in Cleveland, the first step is to take the city’s Civil Service written examination.  Top scorers are contacted to take an exam for physical agility.  Applicants who pass then under go a series of evaluations, including a background check.  Successful applicants undergo training to become Police Officers in Cleveland at the Police Academy Class for 6 months, after which they will undergo further examination.

Columbus:  The crime rate in Columbus is high for both violent and property crimes.  To fight this, the Columbus Police Department has over 1800 sworn officers.  They have an active K-9 unit that have helped to seize of $109 million dollars of narcotics, a dedicated Helicopter Unit that averages 5000 flight hours a year, and a full-time SWAT team.

Dayton:  The city of Dayton has one of the highest crime rates in the country for both violent and property crime, and they have one of the largest police departments in the U.S.  Over 400 sworn law enforcement officers help to fight crime in Dayton with three Operation Divisions active in the city.

Toledo:  The crime rate in Toledo is one of the highest in the U.S. for violent and property crime.  The Toledo Police Department has 585 sworn officers to fight this crime in a high tech manner.  All patrol cars have mobile data computers.  Specialized units that provide jobs for Police Officers in Toledo include the Bomb Squad, Gang Unit, a full time SWAT Team, Vice, and the Metro Drug Task Force.  To obtain jobs as Police Officers in Toledo, applicants must take the Toledo Civil Service Examination for Police Officers.

Ohio Law Enforcement Salaries

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, as indicated in its Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-2013 Edition, the following were the median Ohio law enforcement salaries as of 2010:

  • Detectives and Criminal Investigators: $65,140
  • Police and Sheriff’s Patrol Officers: $56,370
  • Supervisors of Police and Detectives: $74,720

Detectives and Criminal Investigators salaries across Ohio

Area name
Employment
Annual mean wage
Akron OH
100
81370
Canton-Massillon OH
60
55590
Cincinnati-Middletown OH-KY-IN
510
71340
Cleveland-Elyria-Mentor OH
660
77280
Columbus OH
580
66720
Dayton OH
170
72910
Huntington-Ashland WV-KY-OH
40
53640
Toledo OH
140
61520
Youngstown-Warren-Boardman OH-PA
180
58440
West Northwestern Ohio nonmetropolitan area
60
46890
Other Ohio nonmetropolitan area
70
48250
Southern Ohio nonmetropolitan area
60
50850

Police Officer and Sheriff Salary in Ohio

In order to get an idea of the average police officer salary in Ohio, we can look at some of the salary offerings from the individual police departments throughout the state:

City of Columbus, Division of Police

  • A-step (up to 1 year): $47,223.31
  • B-step (1-2 years): $49,561.42
  • C-step (2-3 years): $52,052.61
  • D-step (3-4 years): $62,170.31
  • E-step (over 4 years): $72,331.71

Cincinnati Police Department

  • Police Recruit: $31,320
  • Police Officer (after training): $46,100
  • After 5 years: $55,799

Salaries among deputies in Ohio often vary between counties. For example, the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office pays its deputies:

  • First year: $42,619.20
  • Second year: $47,736
  • Third year: $54,080
  • Fourth year: $71,344

Police and Sheriff’s Patrol Officers salaries across Ohio

Area name
Employment
Annual mean wage
Akron OH
1360
54370
Canton-Massillon OH
440
48880
Cincinnati-Middletown OH-KY-IN
3590
53810
Cleveland-Elyria-Mentor OH
6230
59900
Columbus OH
4360
60120
Dayton OH
1500
57050
Huntington-Ashland WV-KY-OH
410
37260
Lima OH
190
41270
Mansfield OH
240
51160
Parkersburg-Marietta-Vienna WV-OH
220
40950
Sandusky OH
150
43800
Springfield OH
160
48230
Steubenville-Weirton OH-WV
230
38100
Toledo OH
1210
45490
Wheeling WV-OH
Estimate Not Released
36220
Youngstown-Warren-Boardman OH-PA
1010
46750
West Northwestern Ohio nonmetropolitan area
930
38860
Other Ohio nonmetropolitan area
1170
43350
Eastern Ohio nonmetropolitan area
500
40610
Southern Ohio nonmetropolitan area
940
43990

State Trooper Salary in Ohio

According to the Ohio State Highway Patrol, the state trooper salary in Ohio is as follows, including supplemental pay from shift differential and fitness pay:

Year
Base Pay
Year
1
$44482
4
2
$47186
5
3
$50139
10

Police Supervisors and Detectives salaries across Ohio

Area name
Employment
Annual mean wage
Akron OH
180
74080
Canton-Massillon OH
40
66510
Cincinnati-Middletown OH-KY-IN
510
75860
Cleveland-Elyria-Mentor OH
620
83870
Columbus OH
440
79810
Dayton OH
250
77710
Huntington-Ashland WV-KY-OH
50
53150
Lima OH
40
56200
Parkersburg-Marietta-Vienna WV-OH
30
52110
Toledo OH
90
72700
Youngstown-Warren-Boardman OH-PA
160
65190
West Northwestern Ohio nonmetropolitan area
120
56060
Other Ohio nonmetropolitan area
160
60090
Eastern Ohio nonmetropolitan area
50
53780
Southern Ohio nonmetropolitan area
130
57650

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