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Colorado Depts, good, bad, and ugly

Discussion in 'Cop Talk' started by verdugo60, Nov 29, 2011.


  1. verdugo60

    verdugo60
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    Just getting closer to graduation and thinking of applying with some local PD's. Would love to hear about some agencies in the Denver area, especially some of the bigger ones that put on their own recruit P.O.S.T. cert courses like Denver, Aurora, and Lakewood.

    I'm new to the area, but I have heard Denver PD has had some fairly publicized scandals and has a bit of a bad rap around here. I would like to hear what you guys think is important to look for in a dept, especially what specific departments have more positives vs. negatives for a new, green cop with a goal of a long career in L.E. Also any leads on places looking to hire in the next year or so.

    Thanks for what ya do every day, and for the input ahead of time.
     

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  2. Panzergrenadier1979

    Panzergrenadier1979
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    Keystone Cop

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    These days you can't be picky. Apply to every department that you are physically able to.

    Your dream department is the one that hires you.
     

  3. wprebeck

    wprebeck
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    Got quacks?

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    I'm not in Denver, but don't go there...

    They're are getting the old LMPD chief from out here. There's a reason the department is around 80% staffed with folks <6 years on, and that the guys with 20+ retired, AND why so many officers lateraled to other agencies. Its not because of his stellar leadership and willingness to support his officers.
     
  4. DaBigBR

    DaBigBR
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    No Infidels!

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    Heard this from who? The media? The opinion that matters is the opinion of the people that work there. I value that even more than I value the opinion of the public. Why? Because I've never seen a place full of unhappy cops who were supported by their public. Morale ultimately effects services. For all I know it's the biggest dump of a department in the world, but you really should talk to some line grunts.

    I have to pretty much agree with this anymore. The jobs just are not there and the applicant pools are much more qualified on paper than they have been in some time. That doesn't mean you can't get hired or you won't get hired, but it means you either can be picky and be very patient or expand your horizons and apply for the jobs that are out there.

    Remember the worst thing they can do is offer you a job and make you decide whether or not to accept it.
     
  5. The-Fly

    The-Fly
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    The Bofh

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    I'm not a cop myself, but I would NOT want to work for DPD. The people of Denver hate police, the politicians down there WILL hang you out to dry, and the media will perform character assassination every chance they get.

    If you do apply for DPD and get hired, try to lateral to another department out of the Denver metro area asap.
     
  6. Kadetklapp

    Kadetklapp
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    Methberry PD

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    I cannot fathom trying to begin a career in law enforcement this day in age in any state.
     
  7. verdugo60

    verdugo60
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    I was basing it off what people around here had said, NOT from the media. That's the last place I would go for real info.

    I think the local PD's are hiring more than the fed agencies right now. I thought it would be a good way to get experience.
     
  8. verdugo60

    verdugo60
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    How about Aurora, know anything about them?
     
  9. verdugo60

    verdugo60
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    Is it that tough out there? I am fairly confident in my testing abilities in logic and judgement, I will have a 4 year degree and am fluent in Spanish. Will keep working on fitness over the next year.
     
  10. DaBigBR

    DaBigBR
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    No Infidels!

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    The problem is multifaceted.

    The depressed economy has decreased hiring in all sectors. That drives highly "qualified" private sector people out on to the market and a lot of them are attracted to what is a relatively stable job with good benefits and a pension. That means that where five years ago being a guy with four year degree (even in CJ) was worth a lot, today it's the norm. Today you're competing against people with degrees in anything and everything and lots of people with advanced degrees.

    Factor in the number of highly qualified, competent, skilled intelligent people that are military has churned out in ten years of war and the number of them that are interested in public service and the picture gets bleaker. The fact is that a lot of these folks have a lot more experience in critical stress and a lot more training in weapons and tactics (regardless of applicability to civilian LE) than most cops do. They also understand things like rank structure, chain of command, 24 hour watch, etc. In some states where a person can certify themselves, these people can get paid to go the academy using their military benefits.

    Finally, consider that many agencies and/or geographical areas are pressured (or mandated) to place very strong consideration on candidates of a specific gender, ethnicity, etc. The fact is that women and minorities are under-represented in law enforcement compared to the general population. I'm not here to opine on the validity or ethics of hiring based on these factors, but the truth is that it happens. I'm a white, non-hispanic, male, so you can guess where I stand.

    Does this mean it's hopeless? Nope. It means that you've got to be faster, stronger, smarter, better spoken, and better driven than your competition. That's always been the case. There are just more people applying for those jobs than there had been in the recent past. Above all else you need to be able to keep your head up and not be bitter about rejection, because statistically speaking, there will be rejection. I would bet that for every 100 people that test for a job at the average department, between two and five get hired. It's just reality.

    Good luck!
     
  11. verdugo60

    verdugo60
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    That's kind of what I figured. I am a white boy, but the language skills will hopefully give me an edge. The dept. I will be applying for this spring is going to be hiring 15-20 new recruits and the rec. Officer told me they were anticipating 2000 applicants. The key will be to score high on the test, and then the language will give me extra preference points to bump even higher on the list.

    Thanks for the input, any CO cops around to chime in?


    [/B]
     
  12. GioaJack

    GioaJack
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    Conifer Jack

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    Lakewood PD, (in Jefferson County) was originally modeled after my old department, Dade County Public Safety Department, (Miami). They recruited the department hand hired a Lieutenant as their first Chief, (Director) and a Sergeant as the Assistant Director, or equivalent position. I know that several of our officers left Dade to take positions with Lakewood... a number of those returned to Dade after becoming bored.

    They used to require a four-year degree back in the 70's and I would imagine they still do. I know a number of Lakewood officers, one of them lives across my pasture. (Apparently there is no requirement to live within the jurisdiction since we are almost 20 miles outside of it, (possibly he was grandfathered in but he doesn't have all that many years on the department, less than ten I believe).

    Other than the normal gripes any officer is going to have with his or her department I really haven't heard anything that would scare someone away from applying.

    I have no idea what the pay scale is but I'm sure it's much, much higher than the $12,000 a year I started with in Miami. :supergrin:


    Jack
     
  13. verdugo60

    verdugo60
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    Thanks GioaJack, good info. Sounds like this might be a good one for when I have my degree finished and maybe even can try to lateral to from somewhere like Denver PD:wow:

    I can see how having an Admin and citizenry that support you as an LEO could make a huge difference, and it sounds like this admin comes from the line troops so I would hope that they do.

     
  14. faceplant

    faceplant
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    All Depts have issues of some sort. Denver's have been more public. With a new Chief and a new Mayor change is coming. But if they offer a job take it.

    Apply with every place you can from Cheyenne down to Pueblo. Do some ride alongs with the Depts in the area. Do not wait to get your degree before applying.

    Looks like Aurora is gonna have an academy in Nov 2012 and are accepting apps through April. Good Luck

    AURORAGOV.ORG
     
  15. IGotIt

    IGotIt
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    No Demlibtards

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    One big thing you'll have over a lot of other applicants is fluency in the Spanish language. Unless Colo. is a must for you, look to the south, and east. Az, Tx., Fl.
     
  16. cysoto

    cysoto
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    Gone Shooting!

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    The vast majority of the "big" agencies in CO hire lateral transfers. Unless you have a JD or similar (and you know the right people inside the department), your chances of being hired by one of these are slim.

    Your best bet is to pay for your own POST and go work for a small agency in the mountains. Do your time, earn your stripes, and then apply for a lateral transfer to a bigger agency. The only exception to this is CO State Patrol and even then you will probably start your career in in boonies before you can request a transfer to the Metro area.
     
  17. Knute

    Knute
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    "Nothin"

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    I work up in the northern part of CO. Stay away from Denver PD. Obviously there are some very good officers there, but the reputation they have...they have earned. Look into Aurora, Lakewood, Jefferson County SO, and you can even drive a little north and work in Longmont.

    PM me if you have some specific questions.
     
  18. verdugo60

    verdugo60
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    Thanks, sounds like increasing the odds by as many apps as possible will be a good idea.

    [/B]
     
  19. verdugo60

    verdugo60
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    Yeah, I appreciate the positive feedback. My ultimate goal may be to get back to Idaho, specifically the Boise area. The ol' espanol will be used a lot there too.

    [/B]
     
  20. verdugo60

    verdugo60
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    Compared to tuition at many universities, self sponsoring P.O.S.T is not too bad @$6000. About a semester for me. That being said, if I can get an agency to hire without it and put me through their own academy that would be ideal.

    As far as lateral transfers being picked over new recruits, that doesn't apply to the "new" recruit postings does it? I assumed some agencies were reserving some slots for newbs for their full academy. For example, Colorado Springs is hiring for recruits for their academy AND laterals right now. They state on website to apply for one, but not both.

    [/B]