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How to Become a Police Officer in Maine

Becoming a Police Officer in Auburn, Maine

The Auburn Police Department in Maine supports jobs for 51 sworn officers as of 2013. It is one of the few law enforcement agencies in the state that has received national accreditation by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies. Becoming a police officer in Auburn is one of the highest honors in law enforcement in Maine.

In Auburn, police jobs require candidates who are available to work every day of the week and during all shifts as needed. If you’ve got what it takes, use this guide to learn how to become a cop by meeting Police Officer requirements in Auburn:

  1. Confirm that you meet the basic qualifications
  2. Pass a written examination and physical agility test
  3. Pass an oral board interview
  4. Pass a Formal Background Investigation (including Polygraph Test, Medical Exam, Drug Screening and Psychological Exam)
  5. Train at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy

Step 1.  Meet the Basic Qualifications for Auburn Police Officer Candidacy

In order to apply for Auburn police officer candidacy, you must:

  • Be at least 21 years old
  • Be a U.S. citizen
  • Have your high school diploma or GED
  • Have a Maine driver’s license
  • Have no criminal convictions on file

Before filing an application to become a police officer in Auburn, you must pass the tests listed in Step 2 below.

Step 2. Pass a Written Examination and Physical Agility Test

When you submit an application to become a police officer in Auburn, you will be asked to provide your ALERT and PAT scores. These tests must be taken before application is made. The ALERT test is a written test of your literacy, administered at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy in Vassalboro. The PAT, or Physical Agility Test, is also administered at the MCJA headquarters in Vassalboro. Call 207-877-8000 to schedule a time to take both tests before you apply.  When you receive your scores, keep in mind that the PAT scores are only valid for one year from the test date.

You must receive passing scores on both tests. When you have confirmation by mail that you have passed the tests, you may submit a Patrol Office Application for Employment, along with copies of your test scores, copies of your high school diploma/GED, copies of any college transcripts you may have, copies of certificates for any specialized training you may have, and military discharge papers you may have. Submit them to City of Auburn, Human Resources Department, 60 Court Street, Suite 420, Auburn, ME 04210.

Step 3. Pass an Oral Board Interview

After submitting your application, Human Resources will review it. You may be contacted to report for an Oral Board Interview. This interview will include members of the Auburn Police Department. They will evaluate your fitness to serve as an Auburn police officer. Your personality, demeanor, and answers to basic questions will be assessed. If you pass this interview, you will be given a tentative employment offer, dependent upon passing the tests in Step 4.

Step 4. Pass a Formal Background Investigation (including Polygraph Test, Medical Exam, Drug Screening and Psychological Exam)

A formal investigation of your background will be conducted by the Auburn Police Department after they issue you a tentative offer to work as a cop in Auburn.  All of your history, from education to employment to criminal to driving to military to personal, will be investigated wholly.

In addition, you must pass a polygraph test.

You will submit to a medical examination, including a drug-screening test, to assess your medical fitness for the position of Auburn police officer.

You will also submit to a psychological exam, to assess your psychological fitness for the job. If you pass this battery of tests, you will receive a firm offer of employment as an Auburn cop.

Step 5. Train at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy

Great job! You have accomplished your goal of becoming a police officer in Auburn! Now is the time to attend Basic Law Enforcement Training at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy in Vassalboro. This training will last 18 weeks, and will include academic coursework and physical conditioning.

When you complete training, you will initially be assigned to the Patrol Division of the Auburn Police Department for a one-year probationary period. After that, you may opt to work in any of the following divisions:

  • K-9 Team
  • Bicycle Team
  • Drug Enforcement Agent
  • WMD/Hazmat Team
  • Motorcycle Team
  • School Resource Officer

In 2013, the starting salary for an Auburn police officer is $21,623 to $27,088 per year.

Becoming a Police Officer in Bangor, Maine

The Bangor Police Department was established in 1889 with a force of just 13 police officers. Today, the department has 81 sworn police officers and is the third largest in Maine. The law enforcement professionals who hold Bangor police jobs have kept Bangor at one of the lowest violent crime rates for cities with fewer than 100,000 residents. Becoming a police officer in Bangor involves protecting it’s 33,500 residents on a daily basis.

The following provides guidance on how to become a cop by meeting police officer requirements in Bangor:

  1. Make sure that you meet the conditions of the job
  2. Pass a written examination and physical agility test
  3. Pass the oral boards, background investigation and polygraph test
  4. Pass medical and psychological examinations
  5. Complete training at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy

Step 1.  Meet the Conditions to Become a Bangor Police Officer

There are some basic conditions you must meet in order to become a police officer in Bangor. They are:

  • Possess a high school diploma/GED
  • Have a valid driver’s license
  • Preference is given to applicants with college credits
  • Preference is given to applicants with law enforcement or military experience

Before submitting an application for this position, you must pass the examinations in Step 2.

Step 2. Pass a Written Examination and Physical Agility Test

Prior to applying to become a police officer in Bangor, you must pass a written examination of general knowledge and a physical agility test. These are both given by the Maine Criminal Justice Academy in Vassalboro. Contact the academy at 207-877-8000 to schedule both exams (called the ALERT exam and the Physical Fitness Test).  You must pass both of these examinations before you can apply to become a police officer in Bangor. The minimum passing score for the ALERT exam is 40.

For the physical fitness test, you must meet standards for your sex and age in various exercises and a 1.5-mile run.

Once you have passed these tests, you will receive written verification by mail. Enclose copies of this verification with your application for employment as a police officer in Bangor.

You must contact the Bangor Police Department at 207-947-7384 to request an application. Mail it and all necessary attachments to Bangor Police Department, Attn: Training Officer, 240 Main St, Bangor, ME 04401.

Step 3. Pass Oral Boards, a Background Investigation and a Polygraph Test

If the Training Officer reviews your application and attachments and considers you as a candidate to become a police officer in Bangor, you will be contacted to schedule your oral boards. This interview with a panel from the Bangor Police Department will assess your personality to determine if you would be a good fit within the department.

Upon passing the oral boards, you will undergo a complete background check, including a lie detector test. Your prior employers, references, and others significant in your background will be contacted. Your history in all areas will be thoroughly investigated. If you pass this investigation and the lie detector test, you will be given a tentative offer of employment to become a Bangor police officer (contingent upon the next step).

Step 4. Pass Medical and Psychological Examinations

If you have reached Step 4, you have a tentative offer of employment as a police officer in Bangor. You must now pass a medical examination, including a drug test, and a psychological assessment. These are both designed to assess your fitness (physically and mentally) to serve as a Bangor police officer. Passing these will earn you a berth at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy for training.

Step 5. Complete Maine Criminal Justice Academy Training

Way to go! You have made it through the grueling application process and have become a police officer in Maine! Under Maine law, you must now attend basic law enforcement training at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy. For 18 weeks, you will learn about things such as firearms, civil law, criminal law, procedures, and other topics necessary to function as an effective police officer in Bangor. At the conclusion of this training, you will be legally allowed to serve as a police officer in Bangor.

As of 2013, the starting yearly salary for a Bangor police officer is $34,996 to $40,768, depending upon experience.

Becoming a Police Officer in Lewiston, Maine

Lewiston police officers are sworn to uphold the law, protect the safety of the citizens of Lewiston, and foster relationships in the community.

The application process necessary to become a police officer in Lewiston, Maine typically takes no longer than 120 days from start to finish. If you wish to discover how to become a cop in Lewiston by meeting police officer requirements, explore the following steps:

  1. Make sure that you possess the basic credentials
  2. Pass a written examination and physical fitness test
  3. Participate in an interview, background check and polygraph test
  4. Pass medical, psychological and drug screening
  5. Attend the Maine Criminal Justice Academy

Step 1.  Have the Basic Credentials Necessary to Become a Lewiston Police Officer

You must possess some fundamental credentials prior to becoming a police officer in Lewiston. They are:

  • Age 20 or over
  • U.S. citizen
  • Have a high school diploma or GED
  • Valid driver’s license.

If you feel that you possess these credentials, download an application online to become a cop by meeting police officer requirements in Lewiston. You must first complete the sections to register for the Maine ALERT and Physical Fitness Tests (see Step 2). Once you have completed those exams, attach to your completed application:

  • A copy of your birth certificate
  • A certified copy of your high school diploma or GED
  • If you are a naturalized citizen of the US, a Certificate of Citizenship
  • Certified copy of your military discharge, if applicable
  • Maine ALERT Certificate and Physical Fitness Test Results

Mail the above to City of Lewiston, Human Resources Dept, City Building, 27 Pine St, Lewiston, ME 04240.

Step 2. Pass a Written Examination and Physical Fitness Test

Before submitting your application packet in Step 1, you must contact the Maine Criminal Justice Academy (MCJA) to schedule your written ALERT test and Physical Fitness Test. The application forms for both tests are included within the application packet in Step 1. Mail the application to MCJA at the address on the form, then call the MCJA at the number listed on the form to schedule both exams.

You must score at least a 40 on the ALERT test of basic academic knowledge. For the Physical Fitness Test, you must do the most push-ups and sit-ups as possible in 60 seconds, as well as complete a 1.5-mile run in the shortest time possible. You will be held to standards for your age and gender.

After completing the exams, you will receive the results via postal mail. At that time, complete the rest of the Employment Application from Step 1 and mail with the attachments listed to the address.  Once Human Resources receives your application, it will remain active for one year.

Step 3. Pass an Oral Interview, Background Investigation and Polygraph Test

If Human Resources reviews your application favorably, you will be contacted for an oral interview with the Chief of Police of the Lewiston Police Department. After this interview, the Chief may issue to you a conditional offer of employment as a police officer in Lewiston. The offer is conditional on the results of the next investigations and examinations.

You will then be subjected to a thorough background investigation and polygraph test. Your criminal, driving, personal, educational and professional histories will be examined thoroughly. Polygraph questions may concern any of the following areas:

  • Credit/financial
  • Medical record
  • Criminal activity
  • Driving record
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Sexual activity
  • Use of force
  • Work record

If you pass this investigation and test, you will move on to the next step in the hiring process to become a police officer in Lewiston.

Step 4. Pass a Medical Exam and Psychological Exam

You are now in the final stages of the hiring process to become a police officer in Lewiston. You must pass a medical examination and written psychological assessment. A drug screen will also be conducted as part of the medical examination. If you pass all of these examinations, you will receive a firm offer to become a police officer in Lewiston.

Step 5. Attend Training at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy

Congratulations! You are now a police officer in Lewiston, and ready to begin the training phase! You must attend 18 weeks of basic law enforcement training at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy in Vassalboro. Here, you will learn about various aspects of law enforcement, including (but not limited to):

  • Maine state laws
  • Constitutional law
  • Laws of arrest, search and seizure
  • Use of force
  • Extradition
  • Stress management
  • Traffic law enforcement
  • Accident investigation
  • Crowd control

Upon graduation from the MCJA, you will be authorized to work as a certified police officer in Lewiston.

Becoming a Police Officer in Portland, Maine

The Portland Police Department is Maine’s largest law enforcement agency, and its most active in terms of stopping crime and arresting criminals. Becoming a police officer in Portland provides you with many opportunities for career advancement and specialization. If you wish to know how to become a cop by meeting police officer requirements in Portland, you should:

  1. Verify that you meet the basic requirements
  2. Pass a written examination
  3. Pass an oral interview and physical fitness test
  4. Pass a background investigation, polygraph test, job suitability assessment and medical exam
  5. Pass the ALERT test and attend the Maine Criminal Justice Academy

Step 1.  Meet the Basic Requirements for Portland Police Officer Candidacy

The City of Portland, Maine has some basic requirements that you must meet before beginning the application process to become a police officer. They are:

  • You must be a U.S. citizen
  • You must have a high school diploma or GED
  • You must have one or a combination of the following:
    • Two years of employment after high school
    • Three years of education after high school
    • Any combination of employment and education after high school that totals three years
  • You must have a valid driver’s license

If you meet these requirements, download and complete an Application Package. Mail it, along with a cover letter, resume, and a copy of your high school diploma or GED, to Human Resources, 389 Congress St., Room 115, Portland, ME 04101.

Step 2. Pass a Written Examination and Oral Interview

Your application to become a police officer in Portland will be reviewed by Human Resources, and you may be contacted to take the entry-level written examination. This will be held at the Portland Police Department. It consists of 100 multiple-choice questions on general knowledge. You must get 70 correct to pass, and you will receive your exam score on the day of the exam. If you pass, your name will be placed on an Eligible List and sent to the Portland Police Department. From there, the Resume Review Committee will screen the applications, resumes and exam results and contact persons on the list to schedule the next step.

Step 3. Pass an Oral Interview and a Physical Fitness Test

You will interview with members of the Police Department’s Resume Review Committee. This interview is designed to make you feel comfortable, as the panel of reviewers encourages you to talk about yourself.  After the interview, the panel will make recommendations to the Police Chief about whether or not you should continue in the hiring process to become a police officer in Portland.

If you are recommended to continue, you will be contacted to schedule your Physical Fitness Test. You must meet age and gender standards for the maximum number of push-ups you can do, the maximum number of sit-ups you can do in one minute, and the fastest time you can complete a 1.5-mile run. If you do not pass the Physical Fitness Test, you will not move ahead any further in the hiring process to become a police officer in Portland.

Step 4. Pass a Background Investigation, Polygraph Test, Job Suitability Assessment and Medical Exam

Once you have passed both the Physical Fitness Test and oral interview, you will undergo a background investigation and polygraph test. You will first be given a background book, which you must complete truthfully and fully. A background investigator will then investigate and verify the contents of your background book. Any lies, false information or omissions will render you ineligible to become a police officer in Portland.

The Police Chief will review all successful candidates after the background investigation is completed. You may then be presented with a conditional job offer to become a police officer in Portland. This offer will be contingent upon your passing the polygraph test, job suitability assessment and medical exam.

If you pass the polygraph test, you will go on to the job suitability assessment. This process consists of three written assessments administered by a Portland Police Department consultant. The Police Department will review the results of your job suitability assessment and determine if you should continue.

If you pass the job suitability assessment, you will be given a thorough medical examination. This is designed to ensure that you can physically carry out the duties of a Portland Police Officer. If you pass, you will be sworn in as a Portland Police Officer.

Step 5. Pass the ALERT Test and Attend the Maine Criminal Justice Academy

Congratulations! You are now a sworn police officer in Portland! The next step is to pass the ALERT entrance exam and attend the Maine Criminal Justice Academy for 18 weeks of training. The ALERT test is offered on the campus of the Maine Criminal Justice Academy two Wednesdays each month. It tests basic reading comprehension and writing skills.

The curriculum of your basic law enforcement training at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy includes courses in civil rights, cultural diversity, search and seizure, laws of arrest, Maine laws, and much more. Upon graduation from the Maine Criminal Justice Academy, you will begin your career as a Portland Police Officer.

As of March 2013, the starting annual salary for a Portland Police Officer is $34,923.30.

Becoming a Police Officer in South Portland, Maine

As the fourth largest municipal police department in Maine, the South Portland Police Department protects its citizens along the southern coast of the state.  South Portland police jobs involve responding to an average of 35,000 calls each year. Becoming a Police Officer in South Portland is a challenging task, but the responsibility has its rewards.

For information on how to become a cop by meeting police officer requirements in South Portland, read on:

  1. Verify you meet basic eligibility standards
  2. Pass a written examination and physical fitness test
  3. Participate in an interview with South Portland Police Department staff
  4. Pass a background check, polygraph test, medical and psychological evaluations
  5. Complete training at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy

Step 1.  Meet the Basic Eligibility Standards for South Portland Police Officer Candidacy

You must meet some eligibility standards in order to apply to become a police officer in South Portland. These are:

  • Age 20 or older
  • U.S. citizen
  • Have a valid driver’s license
  • Have a high school diploma or GED certificate

If you meet these standards and requirements, you must pass written and physical tests required by the Maine Criminal Justice Academy prior to applying to become a police officer in South Portland. Information on this is provided in the next step.

Step 2. Pass a Written Examination and Physical Fitness Testing

Before applying for a South Portland police job, you must take and pass certain examinations required by the Maine Criminal Justice Academy. These examinations are offered in the South Portland Community Center on the same day. First is the ALERT written exam, testing your general knowledge in reading, writing and math. Next is the Physical Fitness Test (PFT), requiring you to complete certain physical tests like running 1.5 miles in your quickest time.

If you pass both tests, you will be mailed written proofs. Mail a copy of these proofs along with your job application to become a police officer in Portland. Download the Application Packet and mail it, along with the items listed below, to: City of South Portland, Human Resource Office, Rm 105, 25 Cottage Rd, P.O. Box 9422, South Portland, ME 04116-9422:

  • Copy of your current, valid driver’s license
  • Copy of your ALERT test results
  • Copy of your PFT results
  • Copies of any college degrees  or transcripts you possess
  • Copies of DD-214 if you previously served on active duty in the military

Step 3. Participate in an Interview with South Portland Police Department Staff

Next, you will be asked to participate in a structured interview with members of the South Portland Police Department. This interview is to assess your personality and whether you would be a good fit for the South Portland Police Department. If the staff of the police department decides that you are a good fit, you will receive a tentative job offer. This offer is contingent upon your passing the tests in Step 4.

Step 4. Pass a Background Check, Polygraph Test, and Psychological and Medical Evaluations

You now have a conditional offer of employment to become a police officer in South Portland. However, you must pass a series of tests to earn a final offer of employment. The first is a complete and very thorough background investigation. Every aspect of your history – civil, criminal, driving, personal, employment, educational – will be examined thoroughly, with former employers and references being contacted. You must also take a polygraph (lie detector) test.

Next, you will be given a thorough medical and psychological evaluation. This is to determine if you are medically healthy enough to carry out the duties of a police officer in South Portland, as well as to psychologically re-evaluate your suitability for the job. If you pass all of these tests, you will receive a firm offer of employment to become a police officer in South Portland.

Step 5. Complete Training at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy

Kudos to you for making it through the long hiring process! You are now a police officer in training in South Portland! You must attend 18 weeks of basic law enforcement training at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy in Vassalboro. After this training, you will be a fully certified police officer in South Portland.

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