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Peace Officers Fact Sheet

COUNCIL ON LAW ENFORCEMENT EDUCATION AND TRAINING
2401 Egypt Road - Ada, Oklahoma 74820
FULL-TIME PEACE OFFICERS - FACT SHEET

PLEASE NOTE: The FULL-TIME PEACE OFFICERS - FACT SHEET is designed as a quick reference intended to provide information concerning the most frequently asked questions regarding the Oklahoma Statutes governing employment and certification requirements for peace officers. Like any summary, It is not intended to include all information or to address specific local issues.

Appointment of municipal police officers:
The authority for appointment of municipal police officers is found in TITLE 11, 34-101 et seq., of the OKLAHOMA STATUTES.

Appointment of county deputy officers:
The authority for appointment of county deputy officers is found in TITLE 19, 547 et seq., of the OKLAHOMA STATUTES.

Standards for training and certification of peace officers:
Title 70, Section 3311, of the Oklahoma Statutes establishes minimum standards for the training and certification of peace officers. The Council on Law Enforcement Education and Training (CLEET) derives its authority from this statute.

Examination required for certification:
Every person who has not been certified as a police or peace officer shall hold such position on a temporary basis only, and shall, within six (6) months from the date of appointment or taking office, satisfactorily complete a CLEET approved certification course and satisfactorily pass all written examinations required for certification.

Requirements for attending training:
In order to complete CLEET approved certification training, officers must meet, at a minimum, the following conditions:

1. Be at least 21 years of age prior to certification as a peace officer.
2. Must be a United States citizen or in resident alien status, as defined by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
3. Must possess a high school diploma or a GED equivalency certificate. (Minimum requirements)
4. Must not have been convicted in state or federal court for any felony, crime of moral turpitude, or a crime of domestic violence.
5. Must have fingerprint clearance from Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation.
6. Must have undergone psychological evaluation by the employing agency using a psychological instrument approved by CLEET.
7. Must be commissioned or appointed by employing agency prior to attending CLEET approved certification training.
8.Must not have been involuntarily committed to an Oklahoma state mental institution.
9.Must certify that he or she is physically able to fully participate in and complete all phases of the CLEET Basic Peace Officer Certification Academy as mandated in CLEET rules.
10. Must submit all required documentation and enrollment materials.

Workmen's Compensation Insurance:
Peace officers must be covered by Workmen's Compensation Insurance as required under Title 85, Section 3 of Oklahoma Statutes.

Hours per calendar week:
Full-time peace officer is defined as a duly appointed or elected officer who is paid for working more than twenty-five (25) hours per week, as stated in Title 70, 3311 et seq. of the Oklahoma Statutes.

Authority of Peace Officer while off-duty:
Off duty peace officers, with specific authority from the employing agency, may be permitted to carry off-duty weapons. Authority is found in Title 21, Section 1289.23, of the Oklahoma Statutes. If such authority is granted, it must meet the requirements of this section. Counties and municipalities may choose not to permit off-duty weapon status.

Agreement - requirements of Title 70, Section 3311:
Peace officers attending CLEET approved certification training must agree to do so under requirements of Title 70, Section 3311, of the Oklahoma Statutes, and the Council on Law Enforcement Education and Training (CLEET) Administrative Rules and Regulations governing the Certification Program.

Approval of academy:
CLEET conducts academy or certification training. CLEET also issues approval for academies to be conducted by agencies meeting minimum standards for the conduct of such academies, including, but not limited to: resources, staff, curriculum, and facilities.

Authority "employed":
The authority of a peace officer exists only when the officer is "employed" by a law enforcement agency. If the officer leaves the agency, for any reason, the officer has no authority beyond that of a private citizen. The officer's certification with the State of Oklahoma remains valid, unless revoked, suspended, or the officer is de-certified, as provided for under Title 70, Section 3311, and or, the administrative rules and regulations of CLEET.

Training requirements beyond certification:
Oklahoma peace officers are mandated to receive a minimum of 25 hours of continuing education annually; at least two hours of which must be a topic related to mental health issues. The employing agency may also mandate training requirements for their officers.
Each officer must meet minimum standards for firearms requalification annually. Such requalification will be reported to the Council on a specific form designated by CLEET.

DISQUALIFICATIONS
Title 21, 1283 of the Oklahoma Statutes states that a person convicted of a felony may not have a firearm in possession or control. An exception is made under subsection B for persons who have been convicted of a nonviolent felony and received a full and complete pardon and have not been convicted of another felony which has not been pardoned. This conflicts with Oklahoma Attorney General's Opinion 84-101 which states that a person who has received a pardon is not authorized to carry a firearm. The Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals has not yet resolved this conflict.

It is unlawful for any person to willfully make any statement in an application to CLEET knowing the statement is false or intentionally commit fraud in any application to the Council for attendance in any CLEET-conducted or CLEET-approved peace officer academy or program. Violation of this statute is a felony punishable by imprisonment in the Department of Corrections for a term of not less than two (2) years nor more than five (5) years, or by a fine not exceeding Two Thousand Dollars ($2,000.00), or by both such fine and imprisonment.

No person who has had a police or peace officer certification from another state revoked or voluntarily surrendered shall be considered for certification by CLEET within five (5) years of the effective date of any such revocation or voluntary surrender of certification.

FEDERAL DOMESTIC VIOLENCE FIREARM LEGISLATION
The Gun Control Act makes it unlawful for a person who is the subject of a qualifying protection order to possess or receive firearms or ammunition (section 922(g)(8) of the Gun Control Act). Under the ATF’s interpretation of the Official Use Exception, this provision does not apply to persons “performing official duties on behalf of a Federal, State or local law enforcement agency.” The ATF says that if officers are “authorized or required to carry their service weapon at all times, the exception applies to their service weapon at all times.” “The exception does not apply for officers who are ‘off-duty’ at the end of a shift, and are not authorized by statute, regulation, or official department policy to possess their duty weapons for the purpose of performing official duties.”

PLEASE NOTE: The FULL-TIME PEACE OFFICERS - FACT SHEET is designed as a quick reference intended to provide information concerning the most frequently asked questions regarding the Oklahoma Statutes governing employment and certification requirements for peace officers. Like any summary, It is not intended to include all information or to address specific local issues.

Additional information may be obtained by contacting the Council on Law Enforcement Education and Training in Ada, (405) 239-5100, or from a CLEET Field Representative.

Last updated/reviewed March 27, 2009

Information