Sponsored School Search


Law Enforcement Careers in Texas

In Texas, laws are enformced at the city/municipal, county, and state levels. Each type of law enforcement career in Texas has its own requirements and tests that one must pass before licensure as a law enforcement officer can be granted.

Municipal police officers in Texas are called Peace Officers. County sheriffs’ departments employ County Jailers, Deputy Sheriffs and Sheriffs. State troopers work under the jurisdiction of the Texas Department of Public Safety.

Police Officer Jobs in Texas – TX

In Texas, police officers are known as Peace Officers. These jobs may be found in cities and municipalities across Texas, such as:

  • Houston I.S.D. Police Department
  • Laredo Police Department
  • Lubbock Police Department
  • Fort Worth Police Department
  • Arlington Police Department

Titles for peace officer jobs in Texas may be:

  • Peace officer
  • Police officer
  • Patrol officer

According to Uniform Crime Reports (UCR), in 2011 crimes in Texas municipalities decreased by 6.3 percent from 2010’s numbers.

Deputy Sheriff Jobs in Texas – TX

County police officers/deputy sheriffs in Texas are called County Jailers. They are located in counties throughout Texas. Some of the largest counties that employ County Jailers are:

  • Austin County Sheriff’s Office
  • Dallas County Constable Precincts
  • Houston County Sheriff’s Office
  • Collin County Sheriff’s Office
  • El Paso County Sheriff’s Office
 

Titles for deputy sheriff jobs in Texas may be:

  • Sheriff
  • Deputy sheriff
  • County jailer

UCR reports from 2011 indicate that crimes reported by Texas county sheriff departments decreased by 6.6 percent from 2010.

Qualifications for Becoming a Peace Officer or County Jailer in Texas

All peace officers and county jailers in Texas must complete a basic licensing/training course, pass a state licensing examination, and be officially appointed by a Texas law enforcement agency.  Basic requirements to enroll in the licensing course include:

  • U.S. citizenship
  • No family violence offense convictions
  • May operate motor vehicle legally
  • May possess firearms/ammunition legally
  • No convictions for Class B misdemeanor in past 10 years
  • No convictions for any misdemeanors above a Class B ever
  • No current criminal convictions
  • High school diploma/equivalent or 12 hours of college credit
  • Pass medical and psychological examinations and drug tests
  • Pass a background investigation
  • Meet age requirements:
    • Peace officer:  21  (unless candidate has an associate degree or 60 semester hours of college credit – age requirement then is 18)
    • County jailer : 18

Training for Peace Officer and County Jailer Jobs in Texas

All prospective Texas peace officers must pass the current basic Texas peace officer course, taken at a licensed law enforcement academy. Contract, academic and out-of-state training programs may be approved by the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement.

All prospective Texas county jailers must pass the current basic Texas county corrections course.

State Trooper Jobs With the Highway Patrol in Texas – TX

The Texas Highway Patrol Division of the Texas Department of Public Safety employs police officers trained to deal with state traffic supervision and criminal law enforcement on state and rural roads in Texas. As of 2013, there are 2119 commissioned Highway Patrol officers in Texas. The Texas Department of Public Safety also employs State Troopers.

The headquarters of the Texas Highway Patrol Division is located in Austin, TX. There is also a unit located in the Capitol Region, Region VII, of downtown Austin. Highway patrol offices are located in:

  • Wichita Falls
  • Waco
  • Tyler
  • San Antonio
  • San Angelo
  • Pierce
  • Midland
  • McAllen
  • Lufkin
  • Lubbock
  • Laredo
  • Hurst
  • Houston
  • Garland
  • Corpus Christi
  • Conroe
  • Beaumont
  • Austin
  • Amarillo
  • Abilene

State troopers in Texas are located in the above cities, as well as in:

  • Bryan
  • Childress
  • El Paso
  • Granbury
  • Killeen
  • Mineral Wells
  • Odessa
  • Sherman
  • Texarkana
  • Victoria
  • Weslaco

State trooper job titles and jobs with the Texas Highway Patrol include:

  • State trooper
  • Highway patrol officer
  • Trooper trainee

Texas state troopers are helping to keep the state safe. Crimes in the state of Texas decreased across the board in 2011. Compared to 2010’s crime statistics:

  • Murder decreased by 12.7 percent
  • Robbery decreased by 13.6 percent
  • Motor vehicle theft decreased by 7.1 percent
  • Aggravated assault decreased by 4.9 percent

Qualifications for Becoming a State Trooper in Texas

  • Submit an online application
  • Be a U.S. citizen
  • Be at least 20 years old
  • Have at least 60 college credit hours OR 24 months of police or military experience
  • Pass the Trooper Trainee Test
  • Pass a background investigation
  • Pass a physical/medical examination
  • Pass a physical demands test
  • Pass a polygraph examination

Texas Law Enforcement Salaries

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

  • Supervisors of Police and Detectives: $77,190
  • Police and Sheriff’s Patrol Officers: $51,220
  • Detectives and Criminal Investigators: $71,760

Salaries for Detectives and Criminal Investigators in Texas

Area name
Employment
Annual mean wage
Abilene TX
70
50130
Amarillo TX
60
56910
Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos TX
1410
61430
Beaumont-Port Arthur TX
130
59030
Brownsville-Harlingen TX
880
79370
College Station-Bryan TX
50
52320
Corpus Christi TX
200
67810
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington TX
1670
76100
Dallas-Plano-Irving TX Metropolitan Division
1170
81350
Fort Worth-Arlington TX Metropolitan Division
500
63760
Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown TX
1740
79570
Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood TX
120
49930
Longview TX
70
45740
McAllen-Edinburg-Mission TX
890
74250
Midland TX
Estimate Not Released
65160
San Angelo TX
70
84070
Texarkana-Texarkana TX-AR
30
53330
Tyler TX
110
57370
Waco TX
100
58570
Wichita Falls TX
50
45280
Northwestern Texas nonmetropolitan area
220
47200
North Central Texas nonmetropolitan area
70
43370
Eastern Texas nonmetropolitan area
260
43920
Central Texas nonmetropolitan area
120
43510
Southern Texas nonmetropolitan area
2870
75230
Gulf Coast Texas nonmetropolitan area
680
69680

Police Officer and Sheriff Salary in Texas

The Houston Police Department is currently the 5th largest police agency in the United States. Here is a look at the salaries for law enforcement officials working for the Houston Police Department:

  • Police Cadet: $32,664
  • Police Officer: $44,007 to $66,098
  • Sr. Police Officer: $68,660 to $73,768
  • Police Sergeant: $73,218 to $87,421
  • Police Lieutenant: $81,742 to $96,703
  • Police Captain: $95,140 to $109,094

In addition, the department also offers educational incentive pay:

  • Bachelor’s degree: $3,640
  • Master’s degree: $6,240
  • Doctoral degree: $8,840

The salary among deputy sheriffs in Texas is different between counties. This is the salary schedule for deputy sheriffs working for the Harris County Sheriff’s Office:

  • Deputy VI (entry): $40,643
  • Deputy V (1 year): $44,699
  • Deputy IV (4 years): $47,860
  • Deputy III (7 years): $50,689
  • Deputy II (10 years): $53,248
  • Deputy I (14 years): $55,889
  • Senior Deputy (16 years + MPO): $59,800

Salaries for Police and Sheriff’s Patrol Officers in Texas

Area name
Employment
Annual mean wage
Abilene TX
310
Estimate Not Released
Amarillo TX
320
48830
Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos TX
3590
54470
Beaumont-Port Arthur TX
820
50400
Brownsville-Harlingen TX
1020
41040
College Station-Bryan TX
580
48290
Corpus Christi TX
810
52940
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington TX
13200
57940
Dallas-Plano-Irving TX Metropolitan Division
8860
57670
El Paso TX
1700
Estimate Not Released
Fort Worth-Arlington TX Metropolitan Division
4340
58490
Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown TX
14340
54230
Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood TX
610
44490
Longview TX
470
47870
McAllen-Edinburg-Mission TX
1510
43390
Midland TX
330
47630
Odessa TX
240
50670
San Angelo TX
370
50110
San Antonio-New Braunfels TX
4860
48640
Sherman-Denison TX
230
46980
Texarkana-Texarkana TX-AR
300
46810
Tyler TX
410
43610
Waco TX
590
47380
Wichita Falls TX
310
Estimate Not Released
Northwestern Texas nonmetropolitan area
1940
36760
North Central Texas nonmetropolitan area
470
39740
Eastern Texas nonmetropolitan area
1540
38950
Central Texas nonmetropolitan area
930
38200
Southern Texas nonmetropolitan area
940
34460
Gulf Coast Texas nonmetropolitan area
880
38430

State Trooper Salary in Texas

In Texas, state troopers are paid at various levels according to their experience:

  • Trooper Trainee: $35,787
  • Probationary Trooper I: $39,096.96
  • Trooper I: $47,220.96
  • Trooper II: $50,988
  • Trooper III: $54,859.92
  • Trooper IV: $57,504
  • Trooper V: $60,306.96
  • Trooper VI: $61,792.92

Salaries for Police Supervisors and Detectives in Texas

Area name
Employment
Annual mean wage
Abilene TX
40
73060
Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos TX
Estimate Not Released
66980
Beaumont-Port Arthur TX
110
74490
Brownsville-Harlingen TX
110
76600
College Station-Bryan TX
110
73070
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington TX
1390
84930
Dallas-Plano-Irving TX Metropolitan Division
710
90340
Fort Worth-Arlington TX Metropolitan Division
680
79290
Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown TX
930
92940
Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood TX
80
63430
Longview TX
50
70540
McAllen-Edinburg-Mission TX
220
73520
Midland TX
40
71110
Odessa TX
50
75160
San Angelo TX
40
82960
San Antonio-New Braunfels TX
430
80190
Tyler TX
40
81790
Waco TX
70
69530
Northwestern Texas nonmetropolitan area
180
48150
North Central Texas nonmetropolitan area
50
60920
Eastern Texas nonmetropolitan area
150
57790
Central Texas nonmetropolitan area
110
50680
Southern Texas nonmetropolitan area
120
75570
Gulf Coast Texas nonmetropolitan area
110
63480

Back to Top