Lateral Police Officer


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Application Deadline:

Salary Information

Entry Level Salary:
$71,195.00 annual
Academy Graduate:
$71,195.00 annual
$71,195.00 annual
Top Pay:
$86,537.00 annual

Job Description

Patrol City in radio car or on foot; answer calls for the protection of Life and property, and the enforcement of City, county, and state laws; may conduct both preliminary and follow-up investigations of disturbances, prowlers, burglaries, thefts, holdups, vehicle accidents, death, and other criminal incidents.

Make arrests as necessary; interview victims, complainants, and witnesses; interrogate suspects; gather and preserve evidence; testify and present evidence in court.

Contact and cooperate with other law enforcement agencies in matters relating to the Investigation of crimes and the apprehension of offenders.

Prepare reports of arrests made, investigations conducted, and unusual incidents observed.

Serve warrants and subpoenas.

While on patrol, stop drivers who are operating vehicles in violation of laws; warn drivers against unlawful practices; issue citations and make arrests as necessary.

Check buildings for physical security.

Receive, search, book, fingerprint, and transport prisoners.

Direct traffic at fire, special events, and other emergency or congested situations. Administer first aid in emergency situations.

As assigned by the Police Chief, participate as an investigative officer in a comprehensive program involving Juvenile delinquency and the investigation of alternative methods for handling Juveniles in the criminal Justice system.

Maintain contact with citizens regarding potential law enforcement problems and preserve good relationships with the general public.

Additional Information

The Carlsbad Police Department values the experience of Lateral Police Officers, to that end we have streamlined our process to make it more appealing to out-of-state and long distance applicants. 

We are offering Skype style video interviews with applicants.  This allows us to process interested officers without them incurring the expense of having to travel a great distance to participate in an Oral Panel

Applicants that score highly enough on that interview would then be scheduled for a 2nd in depth Pre-Screen interview (video conference too).  That interview would be conducted by an assigned Background Investigator and 2 members of our Professional Services Staff. 

If applicants are successful in the pre-screen interview they will be supplied with a Personal History Statement (PHS), necessary Waivers and a list of required documents.

Once applicants complete their PHS and have all the required documents, we will schedule them for a face to face background interview here at the Carlsbad Police Department.  Our agency is able to offer a one-time travel stipend to offset airfare, lodging and meals for your stay while participating in this step in the process.  This stipend varies from $400 to $800 depending upon distance traveled, time of year traveled and a few other factors.

During that trip, applicants will come in and fill out a lengthy Pre-Investigative Questionnaire (PIQ).  After the PIQ is done, we sit down (same day) and go over your complete package.  If you are still successful, then we will send you to a Polygraph Exam, either that day or the next.  This 1st trip would take 2-3 weekdays.

Applicants that are successful at Polygraph will now have their background investigation ‘officially’ begin.  Applicants would not need to return to our department again until there background investigation was completed and they were scheduled for a Captain’s Interview.  If the Captain’s Interview goes well, applicants would be extended a Conditional Offer of Employment and be scheduled for a Psychological Screening and Medical Exam.  This 2nd trip would take approximately 3-4 weekdays to complete the necessary steps and we would then schedule your start date.

Job Requirements

  • Age: 21 at time of appointment
  • Education: High School Diploma or Equivalent
  • Experience: 1 year law enforcement experience

Lateral applicants must possess a California POST Basic Certificate and have completed a POST-approved Field Training Program. Lateral applicants not currently employed with a law enforcement agency must have worked for a California police department within the last three years or must successfully complete the POST recertification course prior to employment.

Lateral applicants from outside the state of California must complete the California POST Basic Waiver Test/Course.

Below are links to the POST website which will provide information how to begin and complete the process of obtaining the Waiver.


Additional Requirements:

* 20/100 uncorrected in both eyes corrected to 20/20


* Possession of a valid California Class C Driver's License (within 6 months of reloacting to California)


* U.S. citizen or permanent resident alien who is eligible for and has applied for citizenship


* Free of any felony convictions and most misdemeanor convictions.

Contact Informaton

Sgt. Steve Thomas

VISTA, California 92010
phone: 760-931-2275

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