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  • Fed to State Trooper

    I've been a federal 1811 for about 5 years (came in right out of grad school/college) and am looking to move to a trooper position in a State Police agency. I know this seems a little different from what people usually do, but I haven't really been happy with my job/agency and want to work with a different department. I feel like it wouldn't be appropriate to go into details here about why I don't like my specific agency, but the whole experience has been very disappointing.

    The patrol work and numerous opportunities that are offered in a large State agency attract me. I'd like to eventually in the long run get back in an investigative role as a Trooper Detective if the opportunity arises. Has anyone gone from fed to state/local, and what has your experience been like?

  • #2
    Well, that IS rather the other way 'round from what most people are looking to do.

    Can't help much, but I do know some states allow you to use federal training challenge their POST exam, others don't... but most state police and highway patrol organizations require even cops certified in their state to attend their academy, and of course the work is very different from what most 1811s do.

    You'd be starting off on the bottom again in may ways.
    "I am a Soldier. I fight where I'm told and I win where I fight." -- GEN George S. Patton, Jr.

    "With a brother on my left and a sister on my right, we face…. We face what no one should face. We face, so no one else would face. We are in the face of Death." -- Holli Peet

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    • #3
      Thanks for the reply. Yeah, I know I'd be starting from scratch with a new academy, and honestly, I wouldn't want it any other way. I'd rather go through the agency's training program as it is such a big switch. I have no expectations at all; although it would be nice if my federal time would count towards my retirement and that seems to vary agency to agency. Just wanted to see if anyone had any advice based on their experience.

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      • #4
        I've been circling an 1811 position for going on five years now. I am a GS as well and I do not really like what I do hence trying to move into 1811. There are a few reasons why I am hesitant to move to a local department. First throwing away tens years of fed time toward retirement, second taking yet another pay cut and having to move yet again but this time on my own dime. you may want to consider that you can do your twenty then go to local law since many agencies out there have no age restrictions as long as you can pass the PT test.
        AFOSI
        Applied 01/08/12

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        • #5
          Well you wouldn't be the first I've known to go from Fed to State. Granted the three I know started out as Troopers then went Fed (2 Air Marshal & 1 FBI), but within 3 years all of them came back to the Troops.

          Our agency lets us buy up to 2 years of our military time, but I don't know if Fed time would count for that as well. Perhaps you could find happiness with another Fed agency? Would it be difficult to switch? Best of luck to you...
          "The things that will destroy America are prosperity at any price, peace at any price, safety first instead of duty first, the love of soft living and the get rich quick theory of life." - Teddy Roosevelt

          Disclaimer: The opinions I express here are mine and mine alone. They are not intended to reflect the positions/opinions of any other known person(s) or organization(s).

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          • #6
            I was a 0083 (DLA PD) and went local. The pay sucks, the hours suck, and citizens get ****ed was to damn easy. But the job is so much more rewarding!!
            1*

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            • #7
              I know 3 guys who went from Feds to State Trooper gigs (ISP, PSP and NYSP) and non of them regret it at all.

              It really depends on what State Police agency you are looking at...some pay very well and have better benefits. What type of LE makes you happy?

              Maybe check out US Park Police, they are basically the State Police of the capital metro area in many ways...or at least the closest thing in the Federal system

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              • #8
                Pretty much, like others have said, it comes down to what makes you happy or gets you going. I am a FED LEO myself. I am a GL who would give anything to be an 1811, but since it seems like that is not gonna happen, I myself have been looking to go back to Police work. In my case, I was a Police Officer/Detective before the Feds, so I been in both shoes. I miss being a Cop and I miss being a Detective. This, added to location issues, have me applying to local PD departments. Yes, you will take a pay cut and yes you will have to start from scratch, but in the long run, if its gonna make you happy, then go for it. I am. Good luck.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by UD4LIFE View Post
                  I know 3 guys who went from Feds to State Trooper gigs (ISP, PSP and NYSP) and non of them regret it at all.

                  It really depends on what State Police agency you are looking at...some pay very well and have better benefits. What type of LE makes you happy?

                  Maybe check out US Park Police, they are basically the State Police of the capital metro area in many ways...or at least the closest thing in the Federal system

                  +1

                  The Park Police is a good option for 1811s who get the itch to work as locals/state police. Its 6c covered so you don't lose any time, it has a large variety of specialized units, and it has two districts (D2 and D4) which, as UD4LIFE mentions, are basically the State Police for the Capitol Metro area.

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                  • #10
                    http://www.nps.gov/uspp/district_two.htm

                    check out the different options once on the job, plus schedule is sweet

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                    • #11
                      Some state and local police agencies will count Military time in service towards their retirement but none of them will give you any credit towards their retirement plan for civilian federal LE time in service. That time will be wasted.
                      Last edited by SHU; 01-21-2013, 01:03 PM.

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                      • #12
                        I'm considering doing the same thing. Only difference is that I was a cop for a fairly long time. I have applied for a police officer position at a large department. Everyting is kinda up in the air for me at this point. A lot will depend on what kind of cuts my agency makes in the next year.

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                        • #13
                          I've known several 1811 and other FEDS to return to local LEO. Some where prior cops and didn't care for the slower pace and not used to slow the FED is. Some missed the the excitement of local LE. All have been happy, sure there was a pay cut, but many also liked the variety of cases you can work as a local who generally work a very small and specific scope of investigations.
                          ...and is commended as being worthy of trust and confidence

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by jb2257
                            That's not true. The NJ police & fire pension allows you to buy back up to 10 years of military or prior law enforcement time.

                            JB is right. Many agencies (nearly all) will allow you to buy back your time. Many will allow you to roll over a current pension to supplement the years you are wishing to buy back. It is all relative to cost effectiveness...But going from.fed to state or local you can bet that you will be required to go through at minimum a lateral academy.

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                            • #15
                              Not many states will accept Federal training for lateral...in many cases full academy.

                              Originally posted by bobby11vd View Post
                              JB is right. Many agencies (nearly all) will allow you to buy back your time. Many will allow you to roll over a current pension to supplement the years you are wishing to buy back. It is all relative to cost effectiveness...But going from.fed to state or local you can bet that you will be required to go through at minimum a lateral academy.

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