Fresno Police Department Officer Requirements

The Fresno Police Department works to keep the neighborhoods and citizens within its jurisdiction safe while reducing crime and building and maintaining trust with the community. The Fresno PD's community policing efforts involve such programs as Citizens on Patrol as well as a Citizen Police Academy and a unique youth involvement program known as “Bringing Broken Neighborhoods Back to Life.” The department has also adopted a variety of 21st century policing technologies, including video policing, body worn cameras, and a real-time crime center that pulls together information from various sources to help officers perform their duties safely and effectively.

Steps to Becoming a Fresno PD Officer

  1. Meet the minimum qualifications for prospective officers (see below).
  2. Complete an application for the department's cadet program.
  3. Pass a written examination.
  4. Complete an oral interview.
  5. Take a polygraph exam.
  6. Pass the department's background check.
  7. Be hired as a police cadet.
  8. While earning experience as a cadet, complete a California Commission on Police Officer Standards and Training-approved training academy.
  9. Apply to the position of police officer recruit.
  10. Complete a second written exam and oral interview.
  11. Complete psychological and medical screening exams.
  12. Pass the background check for police officers.
  13. Complete the formal police officer recruit field training program.
  14. Begin working as a Fresno police officer.

How to Become a Fresno, California Police Officer

Applicants interested in becoming a police officer with the Fresno Police Department must meet the minimum requirements outlined below. Many prospective Fresno police officers first apply to the position of non-sworn police cadet. Candidates will complete time in service as a Cadet I and/ or II before completing a California Commission on Police Officer Standards and Training (POST)-approved training academy, following which they may be promoted to the position of police officer recruit. Those who do not wish to participate in the cadet program are not required to do so, but are similarly responsible for completing an approved training academy and paying the required tuition themselves. At each stage of the process, applicants must pass the appropriate written exam, physical agility test, medical and psychological exams, background check, and interview(s). Police recruits receive formal field training to prepare them for promotion to the position of sworn officer.

Fresno Police Officer Job Description

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, about 1,070 police officers work in Fresno.1 Many officers with the Fresno Police Department begin their careers as cadets, who perform non-enforcement duties like traffic and parking control, guard and transportation duty for prisoners, and completing reports. Cadets may apply to the position of police recruit upon successfully completing a POST-approved training academy. Police officers in Fresno promise to uphold the law and provide service to the community. Fresno police officers are required to answer all service calls promptly; to remain professional and polite even in stressful situations; to actively seek solutions to problems within the community; to work with community members to resolve complaints and problems; to investigate incidents thoroughly; and to provide victims of crimes with updates as to what is happening in an investigation.

Fresno Police Officer Training, Prerequisites, and Education Requirements

As noted above, candidates for sworn officer positions with the Fresno PD generally begin the application process by working as cadets. The Fresno Police Department requires all applicants for the cadet program to be at least 18 years of age and a US citizen, have a high school diploma or GED, and possess a valid California driver's license.

Cadets must graduate from a POST-approved training academy in order to qualify for the position of police recruit. Cadets are responsible for paying their own tuition, though financial aid may be available. Uniforms, books, and other required materials are also the responsibility of cadets. Upon graduating from an approved police academy training program, cadets may apply to be promoted to police officer recruit.

Applicants for the position of police officer recruit must meet the same requirements as police cadets, plus must be at least 21 years of age and have completed a POST-approved police training academy. All accepted recruits will complete further field training before being sworn in as Fresno police officers.

Fresno Police Officer Salary and Job Outlook

The position of Police Cadet I pays a base rate of $9.92 per hour, while those in the position of Police Cadet II earn between $13 and $16 per hour.2 Promotion to police officer recruit results in a base salary of $4,479 to $4,703 per month, based on qualifications.2 Overall, police officers in Fresno earn an average annual salary of $71,390, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.1 Sworn officers in Fresno receive a variety of benefits, including shift differentials, special unit premiums, and pay incentives for education and bilingual abilities. Officers also receive health insurance and retirement benefits.

Contact Information

Twitter: @FresnoPolice

Fresno Police Department
2323 Mariposa St
Fresno, CA 93721

Frequently Asked Questions

Question: Where is the Fresno police academy?

Answer: The Fresno police department does not maintain a recruit training academy. Prospective recruits are responsible for paying for and completing their own academy training, which must be through a program approved by California Commission on Police Officer Standards and Training (POST). However, many prospective Fresno police officers complete their training at the Fresno City College Police Academy.

Question: Can I become a Fresno police officer without working as a cadet first?

Answer: Yes. Although cadets have the opportunity to practice non-enforcement police work and form relationships with the men and women in the Fresno PD, you can become a Fresno police officer without working as a cadet. However, like cadets, if you follow this route you must pay tuition for and complete a POST-approved police training academy to apply for the police officer recruit position.

Question: What types of Fresno police jobs are available for sworn officers?

Answer: Sworn officers have a variety of opportunities for advancement. These include positions with the Skywatch Air Support Unit, the Homeless Task Force, the Crime Scene Investigations Bureau, and the Multi-Agency Gang Enforcement Consortium (MAGEC).

1. US Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2015 Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Fresno:
2. Fresno Police Department:

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