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How to Become a Police Officer in Fort Worth

Fort Worth, Texas, is the 16th-largest city in the United States with a population of almost 800,000 people.1,2 People in the Fort Worth area can enjoy NASCAR events, rodeos, a variety of shopping and a cowboy culture. Fort Worth is part of the number one tourist destination in Texas, part of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex.With an average cost of living 10% lower than the national average, Fort Worth would be a great place for future cops to begin a career.3

Individuals wishing to become a part of the Fort Worth Police Department will find information on the application, selection and training process below.

Fort Worth Police Officer Requirements

Law enforcement officers of the Fort Worth Police Department (FWPD) patrol the city’s 350 square miles. The FWPD has three bureaus, the support bureau, the finance and personnel bureau and police administration. To become a member of the FWPD, hopeful candidates must:

  • Be between 21 and 44 years of age
  • Be a naturalized citizen
  • Have a high school diploma or GED and 12 semester hours of college
  • Possess a valid class “C” driver’s license
  • Live within 30 minutes of designated station (within six months of employment)
  • Have no convictions or court-related community supervision or parole for any offense above a class B misdemeanor
  • Not have been convicted of a family violence offense

All potential cops must pass a written test, physical assessment test, a background check, a psychological exam, a polygraph exam, medical exam, and an oral interview.

For more information about becoming a law enforcement officer in a big city like Fort Worth, check out 10 Steps to Becoming a Police Officer on our home page.

Chief Rhonda Robertson was appointed as the FWPD Chief of Police in January of 2015. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Law Enforcement Administration from the University of Oklahoma and a Master’s Degree in Criminology from the University of Texas at Arlington. Chief Robertson is a graduate of the 210th Session of the FBI National Academy. Her background includes commanding operations in patrol, internal affairs, criminal investigations, tactical command, and communications.

Fort Worth Police Department Information

As of 2012, there was one sworn officer for every 475 residents.4The FWPD’s Patrol Division has two commands, the North Command and South Command, both responsible for different geographies. The North Command is responsible for the Central, North, and West divisions and the South Command is responsible for the East, South, and Traffic divisions. The two commands are further segmented into 20 zones across the city. The FWPD’s Traffic Division has 93 sworn officers and four units: traffic investigation, radar and freeway, midnight shift, and the motorcycle unit. The Investigative Services division of the FWPD has two units: fugitive and human trafficking. Other units FWPD cops can work for include:

  • Bicycle patrol
  • Intelligence
  • K-9
  • Narcotics
  • SWAT
  • Vice

Cops in Fort Worth earn an annual starting salary of $52,707 (base).5 The FWPD offers a monthly incentive pay to bilingual officers and officers with additional college experience. Salary is also increased based on officer tenure.

Fort Worth Police Training Academy

All potential law enforcement officers must attend basic training at the FWPD Training Center in Fort Worth, Texas. The 32-week Academy trains recruits on federal, state and local laws, defensive tactics, firearms and taser use, police driving, and community service and orientation.6 In 2014, the FY 2014 CCPD budget included funding for 70 new recruits to attend the Academy.6

Fort Worth Police Salary and Jobs Outlook

In the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, over 14,000 cops are employed.7. The average annual salary for law enforcement officers is $59,840.7 The number of cops is projected to increase by 17% between now and 2022, creating an average of 2,760 job openings per year.8 The number of police officers recruited and hired ultimately depend on the city’s budget and priorities and the number of police officer retirements that year.

To view open listings for police officers in Fort Worth, visit our jobs board page.

More Information on the Fort Worth Police Department and Crime

The FWPD has a large focus on community engagement. City residents can be a part of the Citizens on Patrol, a group similar to a neighborhood watch that works with neighborhood police officers to solve crimes in the area. The Department conducts Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training which teaches citizens basic emergency response protocols and actions. The FWPD also offers a 12-week Citizens Police Academy for residents to learn more about police operations.

The FWPD holds several public meetings throughout the year, some of which include public safety forums, diversity forums, deaf and hard of hearing forums, and youth forums.

Hopeful cops or curious citizens will find that participating in the FWPD’s Ride-In program will give them a closer look at the daily duties of a police officer. Participants must be at least 16 to go on a ride-in and must have a parent or legal guardian signature if under age 18. Individuals may contact any patrol division for more information or to schedule a ride-in.

Contact Information

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/InsideFWPD
Twitter: @fortworthpd

Fort Worth Police Department Headquarters
350 W Belknap Street
Fort Worth, Texas 76102
https://www.fortworthpd.com/fwpd/Default.aspx

Additional Resources

  1. Texas Commission on Law Enforcement: https://www.tcole.texas.gov/
  2. The Fraternal Order of Police Texas State Lodge: http://texasfop.org/AboutTXFOP/Lodges,Events,Info

References:
1. Fort Worth Police Department: https://www.fortworthpd.com/
2. US Census Bureau, Fort Worth, Texas: http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/48/4827000.html
3. Sperling’s Best Places, Fort Worth: http://www.bestplaces.net/cost_of_living/city/texas/fort_worth
4. Fort Worth Police Department 2012 Annual Report: https://www.fortworthpd.com/docmgmt/2012-Annual-Report-FINAL.pdf
5. City of Fort Worth Police Trainee Flyer: http://www.fortworthpd.com/docmgmt/Police-Trainee-Flyer-000-3-v06202014v2.pdf
6. Fort Worth Crime Control & Prevention District FY 2014 Program Overview: http://www.fortworthpd.com/docmgmt/FY2014-Program-Descriptions-with-Cover-August-23.pdf
7. Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2014 Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_19100.htm
8. Projections Central: https://www.projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm