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 Can I still get into LE with these past background issues?

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Guest
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PostSubject: Can I still get into LE with these past background issues?   Thu Apr 01, 2010 7:23 am

Here we go again...

This time, as you'll see, the circumstances of this post are quite a bit different than the usual "I tried pot when I was umpteen years old, can I still get in?" questions that you see. I have been considering LE for some time now, but I will admit, as you will soon read, that I've had a couple run ins with the law. Nothing that would be an automatic DQ (unless you look at the history in and of itself...) so there are no felonies or serious issues at hand, but I am dealing with the circumstances of having recent and/or recurring incidents and alcohol related incidents. Here is what I have going for me, as far as a criminal background:

- 05/09/2009 - Arrested for Disorderly Conduct: Urinating in an alley. No charges filed.
- 12/12/2005 - Arrested and convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol.
- 04/01/2004 - Arrested for driving with suspended license. Charges dropped.
- 07/03/2003 - Cited and convicted of driving with suspended license.
- 03/2003 - Cited for Minor with detectable amount of alcohol in system, 0.04% BAC or less.
- 03/2001 - Cited for driving with suspended license.

In short, I know that the answer is yes, I can. What i would like to know is given the recency and frequency of everything listed, how much time will I have to wait before I may be considered, if ever? I am 26 years old now and working to polish up my resume for the day that I do apply. I have great credit, currently working on my degree and have good grades, never any drug issues, solid work history and I am currently working loss prevention for a large retail clothing chain for which I am one of the top producing agents in my region for shoplift apprehensions. I am also competetive in martial arts (Muay Thai) and have competed both here in the U.S. and in Thailand. I am also going to be going to volunteer in Haiti in June. I plan on hiring an expungment lawyer to help clean up my record so that I can pursue a job for time being in executive protection, which I believe will provide me great experience and make me look like a more suitable applicant for LE work.

Can anyone give me further advice on this? Is there any experienced background investigators out there that can offer me words of wisdom?
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Sarge
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PostSubject: Re: Can I still get into LE with these past background issues?   Thu Apr 01, 2010 11:47 am

Based on what you wrote, your biggest problem will probably be your DUI in 2005. The traffic offenses might have occurred far enough in the past to not cause you too much trouble, especially if you've held a valid driver's license for at least a few years now. And, although it obviously won't help you, underage drinking is rather common, and it has been more than five years since that incident, so some police departments wouldn't worry too much about that either. If having been convicted of a DUI within the last five years doesn't automatically disqualify you with a department you want to apply for, then you can apply now, and see what happens. Some departments might consider you now, some might not seriously consider you for a few more years. It depends on things like how bad they need officers and how many other applicants they have to choose from. You can think of it like this. If you and another applicant have the exact same qualifications and score exactly the same on any tests, but the other applicant has less run ins with the law, then the other applicant would be selected before you. Even though it may seem like a long time, you could consider waiting five more years. Believe me 31 is still plenty young enough to start a law enforcement officer career. You could really polish your resume in that time! Other than your "run ins with the law", you sound like a pretty good candidate. Two of the best things you can do might be to continue your education (finish a bachelor or masters degree with good grades) and to join the military. Good luck!
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Guest
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PostSubject: Re: Can I still get into LE with these past background issues?   Thu Apr 01, 2010 1:36 pm

Hey, thanks so much for the positive information, Sarge! And I do pretty much plan to wait until I'm 31 or atleast until I finish school, at which time I should be on or around 31. I don't think I'd be able to work the long a hours as a police officer and still be able to keep up with school, so that is why I atleast want to wait until I get my degree.

I take it that you yourself are a LEO judging by the name Sarge? Do you have experience as a background investigator? Have you seen cases similar to mine? I am considering going for the Border Patrol.

Thanks again for the info!
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Sarge
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PostSubject: Re: Can I still get into LE with these past background issues?   Thu Apr 01, 2010 3:57 pm

I have done background investigations, and I have seen candidates with backgrounds similar to yours. I have seen candidates with backgrounds worse than yours get hired. But, that doesn't guarantee you will. Again, it depends. But you definitely have a chance, especially if you continue to improve.
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Peanut
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PostSubject: Re: Can I still get into LE with these past background issues?   Thu Apr 01, 2010 6:12 pm

I know police officers that had worst backgrounds than you before they were hired!
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Guest
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PostSubject: Re: Can I still get into LE with these past background issues?   Thu Apr 01, 2010 7:36 pm

Good to know! Any idea how long they waited from incident to date of hire? The general concensus is that I have to wait atleast 10 years.

What did these other officers have that increased their suitability to be hired (i.e. military, former security, volunteer work, etc)?
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Peanut
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PostSubject: Re: Can I still get into LE with these past background issues?   Thu Apr 01, 2010 10:26 pm

I don't know if the other officers did anything special. I know one of them just knew someone. That always helps.
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