Common Questions

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What are the requirements to become a police officer in North Carolina?

For information on North Carolina BLET programs and requirements to become a certified law enforcement officer, please visit the North Carolina Department of Justice website.  

What are the training requirements to become an emergency communications officer?

Emergency Communications Officer Trainees must complete a 16-week, in-house field training program. Field training consists of three phases where trainees will be assigned to Police Field Operations, Cary Emergency Medical Services and the Cary Fire Department. ECO trainees will receive several certifications, and are required to obtain their Basic Emergency Communications Officer Certification within the first year of employment.

What is the size of your department?

The department has 198 sworn police officers who are supported by 24 emergency communications officers and a civilian staff of 20 team members.

What type of shifts do officers work?

Patrol consists of five patrol teams; Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, Delta and Echo. Patrol team schedules rotate hours every 28 days but maintain set days off.

Alpha, Bravo and Charlie work 10 hour shifts Tuesday-Friday, and are off Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Every 28 days these three teams rotate between days, evenings and nights. Delta works 12 hour shifts Saturday-Monday, and every other Tuesday for eight hours. Echo works 12.5 hour shifts Saturday-Monday and one Tuesday per month for court and training. Delta and Echo rotate between days and nights every 28 days. The work schedule for specialty assignments varies based on the position.

Are there any residency requirements?

No, the Cary Police Department does not require anyone to live within the Town limits.

Do you accept out-of-state transfers?

Applicants outside of North Carolina will be evaluated based on their training and experience. At a minimum, out-of-state candidates must have completed a basic law enforcement training course accredited by the state from which they are transferring and two years of full-time, sworn law enforcement experience. Out-of-state applicants cannot have a break in service exceeding one year.

Prior to employment as a certified law enforcement officer in North Carolina, out-of-state applicants must successfully complete the employing agency's in-service firearms training and qualification program. They must also complete the Legal Unit (minimum of 98 hours) of the Commission-Accredited BLET and successfully pass the entire state comprehensive examination within their 12-month probationary period.

If an applicant applied during a previous recruitment, may that application packet be used for the current recruitment?

No. The Department requires that a new application packet be completed to ensure all pertinent information is included and up-to-date.

What is the probationary period for new employees?

North Carolina State law requires a one-year probationary period for all new police officers. The probationary period for new emergency communication officers and other non-sworn positions is 6 months.

Does the Cary Police Department have a take-home car program?

No, the Cary Police Department does not have a take-home car program. Patrol officers are assigned a vehicle that is shared with an officer from an opposite shift. The patrol vehicle is parked within the officers assigned District.

What is your policy regarding tattoos?

General Order 2.07 states: “Body piercings and tattoos may not be visible to the public while on duty. Tattoos are defined as any tattoo, scar, branding, mark, or other permanent or temporary body art or modification deliberately placed on the body for purposes of decoration, ornamentation, or adornment. All offensive and/or inappropriate tattoos are strictly prohibited. Offensive and inappropriate tattoos are defined as those which depicts gang related images, racially inappropriate images, sexually suggestive or explicit images, or if the image depicts, describes or refers to intolerance of, or discrimination against any race, color, preference, creed, religion, gender, national origin, sexual orientation or, it is commonly associated with any organization or group which advocates such intolerance or discrimination. Tattoos on the face, neck and hands or any location which cannot be concealed by the proper wearing of the issued long sleeve uniform is prohibited. Officers who currently have visible tattoo(s) are required to have their tattoos covered at all times while on duty. The method of concealment of tattoos while on duty will be through the wearing of the long sleeve uniform shirt.”

What documents are required for the application process?

As part of the background investigation, applicants for most positions will be required to submit the following information for review:

  • Copy of Birth Certificate
  • Credit Report
  • Certified Criminal Records Checks from all counties in which candidate lived in the last 10 years. If candidate attended high school within those 10 years and the high school was located in a different county than candidate's residence, must include that county's criminal history check as well.
  •  Certified Driving History from all states in which candidate has lived in the past 10 years.
  •  Copy of High School Diploma or GED
  •  Copy of College Diploma or transcript if not graduated (if applicable)
  •  Copy of BLET Certificate Of Graduation (if applicable)
  •  Copy of Law Enforcement Certificate (if applicable)
  •  Copy of full DD 214 (if applicable)

Out-of-state applicants who are certified law enforcement officers must also submit an official curriculum from their basic law enforcement training academy which includes a topical and hourly breakdown of the training received.

Please follow the links below for information on how to obtain your credit report and certified copies from the North Carolina Department of Transportation and North Carolina courts.

Credit Report Information

NC DOT Certified Driving Records Request

North Carolina Department of Justice