Is 35 years old too late to get involved in law enforcement? [Archive] - Glock Talk

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harlenm
11-09-2012, 08:02
I tried when I was in my early 20's and was unsuccessful in getting a job.

We are thinking about moving out of CT and to the Charlotte area, so I thought maybe I'd give it a shot and apply for the Charlotte Police Dept.

While I'm not terribly out of shape, I am a few lbs overweight(maybe 5-10) and would need to lose that and get in shape to pass the agility test.

Is my age going to be an issue, I'm sure I am going to be competeting against people 10+ years younger than me.

fusegsp
11-09-2012, 08:16
Is my age going to be an issue, I'm sure I am going to be competeting against people 10+ years younger than me.I think you need to meet a standard, rather than compete with anyone else. I may be wrong. I don't think 35 is too old to become a police officer. It's been done. No reason you can't do it.

hamster
11-09-2012, 08:21
I tried when I was in my early 20's and was unsuccessful in getting a job.

We are thinking about moving out of CT and to the Charlotte area, so I thought maybe I'd give it a shot and apply for the Charlotte Police Dept.

While I'm not terribly out of shape, I am a few lbs overweight(maybe 5-10) and would need to lose that and get in shape to pass the agility test.

Is my age going to be an issue, I'm sure I am going to be competeting against people 10+ years younger than me.

Based on what I've seen watching "COPS" being overweight doesn't seem to be a disqualifier. :)

I kid.

On a serious note. I had dreams of joining the FBI academy, until I realized I'd never be able to run my fat behind around their obstacle course in time. Although maybe they are less stringent with the IT nerds they hire than the field agents.

harlenm
11-09-2012, 08:27
I weight 172, would like to be 165, so I'm not fat!!!!!!

I'm just worried that I'd be at a disadvantage competing against younger people.

gigab1te
11-09-2012, 08:29
I know three or four officers who started later than that and who are true assets to their departments. With that said, I wouldn't let much more time fly by if this is your dream.

On the plus side, you'll be bringing life experience and hopefully more mature judgement with you. On the negative side, you will have some physical demands (they won't be as a bad as you are imagining), you have more background for your employer to wade through during the hiring process, and you'll be reporting to superiors who may be your age or slightly younger.

I'll edit this to add (after reading the post below me) that hiring people out of the military is also pretty common.

bmoore
11-09-2012, 08:31
Not out here, San Diego Sheriffs take people after they did their 20 in the military. Only thing you have to worry about out here is all the right wing nuts taking your pay and benefits. I say go for it. San Diego Sheriffs need like seriously 4,000 deputies in like 6 years or something really crazy like that.

Drjones
11-09-2012, 08:37
Only thing you have to worry about out here is all the right wing nuts taking your pay and benefits.


Yep, you're right. We want police, EMT, firefighters to work for free - literally no pay - and the only thing stopping us from making that happen is the benevolent left.

harlenm
11-09-2012, 08:40
Well, the Charlotte-Mecklenberg PD starts at $40k, so it's not that great of a pay, but it's a start, and it's a job that will get me out of CT!

OlliesRevenge
11-09-2012, 08:40
Is my age going to be an issue, I'm sure I am going to be competeting against people 10+ years younger than me.

I'm pretty sure age discrimination is against the law in any circumstance, although proving it could be difficult. At the federal level, according to the EEOC, age 40 is the magic number whereby you become a "protected class" just like racial minorities. Check your state laws as well.

http://www.eeoc.gov/employees/

http://www.eeoc.gov/laws/types/age.cfm

harlenm
11-09-2012, 08:42
I think next week I will call the recruiter and speak to them. I need to join a gym and get in shape too. Time is so difficult, but a few days a week might be doable.

ScaryPerryDawsy
11-09-2012, 08:48
I recently went through the hiring process for my sheriff's dept here in Florida. I'm 40 and can tell you that the PAT course I ran was demanding but not that bad. The academy is another story. I will tell you that the psychological exam, polygraph and board reviews are what you will want to focus on. The single most important thing with all of it is to be honest! Good luck with your possible endeavour. :thumbup:

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mgs
11-09-2012, 08:54
Should not be a problem.....a few friends of mine have done it and are successful.

AZLawDawg
11-09-2012, 09:01
I tried when I was in my early 20's and was unsuccessful in getting a job.

We are thinking about moving out of CT and to the Charlotte area, so I thought maybe I'd give it a shot and apply for the Charlotte Police Dept.

While I'm not terribly out of shape, I am a few lbs overweight(maybe 5-10) and would need to lose that and get in shape to pass the agility test.

Is my age going to be an issue, I'm sure I am going to be competeting against people 10+ years younger than me.

Not even, you'll be fine (a guy in my academy was 46 when he graduated), just don't train to pass the physical tests during the application process, train for the academy.

Bruce M
11-09-2012, 09:08
There was a guy in my class who was 49; he was in better shape than alot of guys since he had been a coach before that. Some agencies do have an upper age limit, other agencies are flexible and use testing results.

Patchman
11-09-2012, 09:16
For any agency that you're focused on, I would also find out how long (timewise) the process is expected to be before actually getting hired. Are we talking 6 months or so, or (say) two years or so?

nikerret
11-09-2012, 09:21
Not too old, at all.

Chuck TX
11-09-2012, 09:26
I've known quite a few folks older than 35 who have done it. I don't believe it is really that uncommon.

Rancher
11-09-2012, 09:37
Not to old but what qualifications do you have? If you have any college degree it will help. It don't make you "smarter" than the next guy but shows a dedication on your part to better yourself. My former department was big on education.

Lots of guys now with 4 year degrees and/or military service looking at LE jobs. Life experience is great but hopefully you can bring more than just that to the table.

Good luck. It's one of those jobs you do for yourself because you love it.

Rancher

harlenm
11-09-2012, 10:03
Not to old but what qualifications do you have? If you have any college degree it will help. It don't make you "smarter" than the next guy but shows a dedication on your part to better yourself. My former department was big on education.

Lots of guys now with 4 year degrees and/or military service looking at LE jobs. Life experience is great but hopefully you can bring more than just that to the table.

Good luck. It's one of those jobs you do for yourself because you love it.

Rancher

I have a BA in crimimal justice.

Calico Jack
11-09-2012, 10:34
For any agency that you're focused on, I would also find out how long (timewise) the process is expected to be before actually getting hired. Are we talking 6 months or so, or (say) two years or so?

The CMPD officer I spoke to told me that the process takes about 12 to 18 months.


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bmoore
11-09-2012, 10:36
I have a BA in crimimal justice.

You should go for it man. Then once you get on your set schedule and off probation start chipping away at your EMT cert, then prereq's for paramedic school, then paramedic school, finally you can come work for the Fire dept like all police officers wanted to do in the first place. Just kidding, good luck if you decide to do it.

slosh
11-09-2012, 10:38
I am 37 and in the hiring process for being a cop. Passed the PT, Written and Oral boards. I am in the Air Force and will retire next year. So started to get a jump on being a cop. The PT test was just easy. I never worried about that, its the others im worried about. I am training now for the academy the physical portion and from what im hearing its just like boot camp all over so should be okay. I dont think your to old at all.

ustate
11-09-2012, 10:40
In my Dept we have people getting hired at all ages. Here you would need to pass a PT test to be hired and then again to graduate the academy. The amount of push-ups, sit-ups etc and time on the 1.5 mile run is based on age and gender.

mixflip
11-09-2012, 10:54
My state does not have an age restriction for state LEO's. If you can pass all the tests your age doesnt matter. We had a 56 year old cadet in my academy. He washed out only due to injury.

Our average age was 40 mostly because half my classmates were freshly retired military folks who retired at about 38-ish. Damn double dippers!!! Im so jealous.

I was in my late 30's when I joined.

The hard part is finding a 35 year old who has a clean record and a drug past that was short term/recreational.

M&P Shooter
11-09-2012, 10:57
Don't take this the wrong way but why would anyone want to be a cop today? Low pay, deal with low life scum all day, exposed to junkies with AIDS and many other nasty stuff and the potential to get killed for poor pay. Last but not least the scumbags have way more rights then the cops it seems today:crying:

Butcher
11-09-2012, 11:02
We had five or six people in my academy class who were 40+. You only compete with yourself for the PT tests. They're scored on a sliding scale for age and body weight or BMI. Lose weight because its good for you anyway and makes you score higher


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JudgeRoyBean
11-09-2012, 11:03
I tried when I was in my early 20's and was unsuccessful in getting a job.

We are thinking about moving out of CT and to the Charlotte area, so I thought maybe I'd give it a shot and apply for the Charlotte Police Dept.

While I'm not terribly out of shape, I am a few lbs overweight(maybe 5-10) and would need to lose that and get in shape to pass the agility test.

Is my age going to be an issue, I'm sure I am going to be competeting against people 10+ years younger than me.

I was 32 and passed the physical. You wont know unless you try. Good luck! :cool:

stolenphot0
11-09-2012, 11:28
Ohio State Patrol has a cut off of 35 years old. If you aren't in by 35 then you are out of luck. Dayton police has the same restriction, but you can fail the enrollment test and still qualify because the test was deemed unfair to minorities.

Kettering, where I live is a Dayton suburb and they don't have an age limit, but are very hard to get on with. Oakwood, another suburb here requires new recruits to have the academy, EMT and Fire training.

hamster
11-09-2012, 11:33
Ohio State Patrol has a cut off of 35 years old. If you aren't in by 35 then you are out of luck. Dayton police has the same restriction, but you can fail the enrollment test and still qualify because the test was deemed unfair to minorities.

Kettering, where I live is a Dayton suburb and they don't have an age limit, but are very hard to get on with. Oakwood, another suburb here requires new recruits to have the academy, EMT and Fire training.

Crazy. As far as being in good condition and healthy, there are plenty of 40 and 50 year olds that are in fantastic condition. Lance Armstrong for example (Doping issue aside)

VinnieD
11-09-2012, 11:45
My local police academy has a set of standards for cadets in their 20's another for 30's, and another still for people in their 40's, so no 35 isn't too old, and it's more an issue of qualification than of competition. They want as many to graduate as possible. I've considered it myself a few times.

DaleGribble
11-09-2012, 11:53
Ok Harlen, here's the real deal and I usually save these remarks for my friends who ask me about getting into po-lease work but I'll air them here since we've both been GT'ers for awhile.

First, a little background. I got a degree in Criminal Justice and then spent six years on the job. I started at the bottom of the totem pole and received two promotions eventually becoming a Sgt, which meant running a shift of six people. I did SRT and hostage negotiations in addition to my normal duties. In other words, I got a standard cop resume for someone on the job that long. I wasn't one of the chosen kids that made Capt in a few years and I wasn't one of the dip wads that got stuck in the hood forever. I was middle of the pack and that was fine with me.

Now, ask yourself these questions. Are you prepared to shoot someone in the ****ing face? Are you prepared to be prepared to do that everyday? Are you prepared to die every time you go to work? More importantly are you prepared to leave your wife a widow and your child an orphan? Are you prepared to go to prison for a mistake? Are you prepared to be sued, regardless of facts, all for doing your job? Are you prepared to train hard, constantly, to be the best officer you can be? Are you willing to bleed? Are you willing to be hated by total strangers based on your uniform?

If you answered no to any of those questions, don't even bother to fill out the application.

I'm not trying to be a dick, I'm just telling you how it is. I'm a paramedic now and have been on two sides of the public safety spectrum so I'm fully qualified to say that cops have it way worse than we do and those mother ****ers are dumb as he'll for dealing with what they have to deal with for the money they make.

My advice, stay away and enjoy your family. Life will be much easier for you.

Rancher
11-09-2012, 11:53
I have a BA in crimimal justice.

Sounds like your good to go. Don't stress the PT. Start running now. Lift as well.

If you are just set on the one department get your app in if they are taking them. My department took apps year round but academy years varied so just cause you put in an app did not mean the process went any further. There was also a test that went with our apps just to make sure the person was not a total idiot.

We would also bring in select canidates that lived out of the area to get almost everything done in a day such as PT and the polly just so they could be put in the pool of potential new hires. Again, just cause they made it that far did not mean they were in. Lengthy process.

If your open to other options start looking at more than just the one department unless you know that is the only place you want to be.

Good luck!

Rancher

Slug71
11-09-2012, 11:59
No. It's about the 'right' age.

ray9898
11-09-2012, 11:59
You will be fine. Plenty of guys much older do it every day.

harlenm
11-09-2012, 11:59
Ok Harlen, here's the real deal and I usually save these remarks for my friends who ask me about getting into po-lease work but I'll air them here since we've both been GT'ers for awhile.

First, a little background. I got a degree in Criminal Justice and then spent six years on the job. I started at the bottom of the totem pole and received two promotions eventually becoming a Sgt, which meant running a shift of six people. I did SRT and hostage negotiations in addition to my normal duties. In other words, I got a standard cop resume for someone on the job that long. I wasn't one of the chosen kids that made Capt in a few years and I wasn't one of the dip wads that got stuck in the hood forever. I was middle of the pack and that was fine with me.

Now, ask yourself these questions. Are you prepared to shoot someone in the ****ing face? Are you prepared to be prepared to do that everyday? Are you prepared to die every time you go to work? More importantly are you prepared to leave your wife a widow and your child an orphan? Are you prepared to go to prison for a mistake? Are you prepared to be sued, regardless of facts, all for doing your job? Are you prepared to train hard, constantly, to be the best officer you can be? Are you willing to bleed? Are you willing to be hated by total strangers based on your uniform?

If you answered no to any of those questions, don't even bother to fill out the application.

I'm not trying to be a dick, I'm just telling you how it is. I'm a paramedic now and have been on two sides of the public safety spectrum so I'm fully qualified to say that cops have it way worse than we do and those mother ****ers are dumb as he'll for dealing with what they have to deal with for the money they make.

My advice, stay away and enjoy your family. Life will be much easier for you.

I completely understand where you are coming from. I don't know the answers to those questions. It's just it was something I wanted to do for a long time, and if we do move, it gives me another opportunity to try again. If I don't like it, I can always quit, but atleast I didn't spend my entire life wondering if it was something I completely missed out on.

lwt210
11-09-2012, 12:03
35 is not too old to apply.

I have almost 17 years on the job. I have seen much older than you make it through the academy and go on to be good cops.

I have intimate knowledge of our hiring process (or at least the last one as I was on the board) and can tell you that youth had little to do with performance on the PT test.

It's more about preparing than years. We had 22 year old kids, single digit body fat percentages, barely squeak by the cut off times on the run.

Some of the best times were ran by older applicants.

Our PT test is one of the first pass/fail parts of our process. It waxes most folks out and it ain't hard. I feel confident I could train for less than a week and pass it today after all these years.

I will say the job ain't what it used to be. I won't post that rant in an already long post. PM me if you want more details.

Good luck with it.

lwt210
11-09-2012, 12:04
It's just it was something I wanted to do for a long time,

If I don't like it, I can always quit, but atleast I didn't spend my entire life wondering if it was something I completely missed out on.

Why do you want to do it?

And have you been on a ride-a-long?

Do that a couple of times and it will give you some insight.

harlenm
11-09-2012, 12:06
And have you been on a ride-a-long?

Do that a couple of times and it will give you some insight.

No one here offers it.

DaleGribble
11-09-2012, 12:09
I completely understand where you are coming from. I don't know the answers to those questions. It's just it was something I wanted to do for a long time, and if we do move, it gives me another opportunity to try again. If I don't like it, I can always quit, but atleast I didn't spend my entire life wondering if it was something I completely missed out on.

Obviously you don't owe me or anyone else an explanation about why you wan to do this. You're a grown man and I've never claimed you as a dependent on my 1040 so my opinion doesn't really matter. I just want you to know the negatives involved.

Now that I'm off my soapbox, to answer your original question, your age will be an asset to you in the hiring process, not a hinderance. As a line officer and later a supervisor, I had better experiences with older, more mature officers than with the younger guys. Most departments share that same view, barring any age restrictions in the hiring process.

Rabbi
11-09-2012, 12:13
Finished the Academy at 34, sworn in at 35. One of the best choices I have ever made. If the echos of my previous life were not so strong (I have a lot going on) I would go full time and make it a career.

Yes, it is a tad on the older side but there are even older people who manage just fine. There are so many details, thoughts, reasons, whatever. I see people covering them over and over in threads like these so I will give you a somewhat off beat observation, Are you ready to be a 35+ year old guy who is learning and answerable to people who are sometimes in their early 20's? Sometimes they are women, sometimes they are idiots. (and most of the time they actually know what they are doing, in spite of how smart you think you are)

Given my history of succeeding at things, that one was a gut check for me. Sure, I know how to play ball and I did but deep down inside it took some time for me to realize, in spite of its flaws, the system works fairly well....and no matter how damned smart I think I am, experience means a lot (almost everything) in this business....and the guy with experience may be a 23 year old who actually IS an idiot....but a pretty good cop.

Chew on that reality...or it will chew on you.

cysoto
11-09-2012, 12:21
35 y/o is about the age when I decided to get out of LE. The pay is stupidly low (even at Federal level), the bureaucracy within the department is piled sky-high and the only thing you have to look forward to is becoming a desk jockey.

lwt210
11-09-2012, 12:22
No one here offers it.

I'll provide one from afar:

Today's calls. I kid you not.

1. Call to gas station. Complainant on payphone, mad cause gas station attendant won't let him use the bathroom. Says it is federal law she has to. Leaves the part out about him constantly shoplifing the mouthwash from the shelves to drink at the homeless camp.

2. Domestic. Woman mad because her sister wants some rent money....sister who is getting tossed out/evicted for not paying rent. Keeping the flat screen as collateral. The flat screen that they rent to own at like 300 percent interest. TV does not work.

3. Woman hearing voices. 28th call to 911 in three months. Countless calls to her apartment manager. Tells me neighbors are hacking into her apartment electronically to watch her make her coffee. Calls back and wants to ask why I stopped to talk to the manager on the way out.

4. Call back to number 2. Sister took the tv. Original complainant wants to know legal options. Complainant is not on lease of apartment she is at. Wants officers to help her load her stuff because she is disabled. All her stuff. Furniture, appliances, etc.

5. Guy leaves his gun in truck...unlocked truck....windows down....at job site. Revolver gone from seat on lunchbreak. Wants to know what he could have done different.

6. Caller wants to know where a business is. Asks me to "hold on" while he completes his call with his woman....on his smart phone.....that has Google......that told him where his destination was after I suggested he try that.


You up for that action? That is the reality of a typical shift in LE.

bmoore
11-09-2012, 14:38
20 year old guy with the rubber plunger of a syringe stuck in his ear. He was digging it in his ear to lubricate it with ear wax to shoot heroine. That was yesterday.

aspartz
11-09-2012, 14:49
I see lots of people in the court report over 35 having their first involvement with law enforcement.

ARS

ray9898
11-09-2012, 15:21
I'll provide one from afar:

Today's calls. I kid you not.

1. Call to gas station. Complainant on payphone, mad cause gas station attendant won't let him use the bathroom. Says it is federal law she has to. Leaves the part out about him constantly shoplifing the mouthwash from the shelves to drink at the homeless camp.

2. Domestic. Woman mad because her sister wants some rent money....sister who is getting tossed out/evicted for not paying rent. Keeping the flat screen as collateral. The flat screen that they rent to own at like 300 percent interest. TV does not work.

3. Woman hearing voices. 28th call to 911 in three months. Countless calls to her apartment manager. Tells me neighbors are hacking into her apartment electronically to watch her make her coffee. Calls back and wants to ask why I stopped to talk to the manager on the way out.

4. Call back to number 2. Sister took the tv. Original complainant wants to know legal options. Complainant is not on lease of apartment she is at. Wants officers to help her load her stuff because she is disabled. All her stuff. Furniture, appliances, etc.

5. Guy leaves his gun in truck...unlocked truck....windows down....at job site. Revolver gone from seat on lunchbreak. Wants to know what he could have done different.

6. Caller wants to know where a business is. Asks me to "hold on" while he completes his call with his woman....on his smart phone.....that has Google......that told him where his destination was after I suggested he try that.


You up for that action? That is the reality of a typical shift in LE.

99% boredom and 1% sheer terror. You go through BS like that and then all of a sudden the store around the corner gets robbed.

You have to be ready to go from 0 to 100 in the blink of an eye.

Kingarthurhk
11-09-2012, 18:18
I am 37 and in the hiring process for being a cop. Passed the PT, Written and Oral boards. I am in the Air Force and will retire next year. So started to get a jump on being a cop. The PT test was just easy. I never worried about that, its the others im worried about. I am training now for the academy the physical portion and from what im hearing its just like boot camp all over so should be okay. I dont think your to old at all.

I knew a guy like that in my Border Patrol Class well before that pesky Y2k thing. Yes, I am old. At any rate, they are five years away from retirement number two. Not a bad way to go.

CJStudent
11-09-2012, 19:21
Age cut off for federal law enforcement positions is 37. I've been doing corrections for 3 years, evenly split between state and federal. I had a lot of older people in both academies, though neither was what you could call "physically intensive", lol. Honestly, the maturity an older candidate generally brings tends to make them a better officer than a young PT stud that doesn't have a lick of common sense.

JDennis
11-09-2012, 19:39
I say go for it. I am in the same boat as you. I have been wanting to do it for years and our department needs officers, the application cut off is Dec 5th. I am 32 and been in sales for 12 years, the pay used to be great but with the way the economy is, last year has gone to s**t. I dont think it is going to get any better soon I feel.

*ASH*
11-09-2012, 20:26
here in NC , trust me its not hard . and if you do go to Charlotte make sure you are in the good part of town lol. ive been to mighty rough parts . its bout 3 hours from me . we go to the gun show there alot and to IKEA.

and be proud to become a tarheel :wavey:

soflasmg
11-09-2012, 20:35
Not out here, San Diego Sheriffs take people after they did their 20 in the military. Only thing you have to worry about out here is all the right wing nuts taking your pay and benefits. .

You are the enemy you statist *****.