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Do I Have A Chance?

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  • Do I Have A Chance?

    Hey Guys,

    I know there are many threads out there with similar questions but I still feel the need to ask anyways.

    Lately I have been seriously considering applying for a position as a law enforcement officer, the idea of joining law enforcement has always been in the back in my mind but until recently I was never sure if it was something I really wanted to do. Anyways, I have made some mistakes along the way and have been anxiously thinking about how they could affect my chances of pursuing this type of career and was hoping someone on here could shed some light for me.

    I am currently 23 years old. Throughout high school I only was in trouble one time and received one day of ISS for a practical joke gone wrong. I never began drinking until the summer after senior year. As a freshman in college I smoked marijuana approximately 10 times and as a junior I used adderall or a similar substance (Ridilin, Vivanz) approximately 6 times. I also got into trouble with my school with some alcohol related issues on 3 separate occasions throughout college. Also, when I moved off campus I received a ticket for a noise disturbance. I admittedly can also say that one time I had too many drinks and drove home. This all happened between the ages of 17-20.

    Since then I have straightened myself out and removed myself from the partying world that I was caught up in. I finished getting my degree and currently work in the digital forensics field. I have a good credit score with no blemishes on my report. I have good job references with no employment gaps since the age of 16. I have been pulled over once and ticketed for speeding but that is the only blemish on my driving record.

    What I am wondering is if my past mistakes are too much for me to have a chance at ever working for a law enforcement agency?

    Thanks

  • #2
    Don't take anyone's word on whether or not you have a chance. The best thing you can do is apply and find out. What harm could it do to apply? Just tell the truth, you haven't done anything so awefully bad that can't be forgiven or explained with adolescent ignorance and just having a moment of dumb decision making. Everyone has done at least one thing they are not entirely proud of and have had to admit something. No agency expects you to be a choir boy who just left the church or expect you to be the Pope. They expect you to tell the truth and have integrity. If they deny you this time around, wait a few years, till your like 26-27 and try again. Just don't give up. And don't ever lie.

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    • #3
      Im not an adjudicator, this is strictly my opinion everything I type here will be based on what I've read on public released adjudicated Security Clearance cases. The Marijuana thing I would say has been mitigated due to the passage of time. I can't comment on the alcohol related incidents because you haven't provided enough info to accurately assess that. The biggest hurdle you will have is the use of adderall/similar substance. Unless you were prescribed that medication, you will have a hard time mitigating usage of that. Taking someone else's medication, or buying medication not prescribed to you is a big no no. Even though it occurred during your college years, you are expected to know better regarding prescribed medication. Marijuana on the other hand has become so prevalent today, that its more surprising to find people that haven't used it. Your best bet is to wait a few more years then apply. I would look into doing volunteer work as well.
      Last edited by Levithane; 11-30-2018, 02:26 PM. Reason: Grammar

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Hall2515 View Post
        What I am wondering is if my past mistakes are too much for me to have a chance at ever working for a law enforcement agency?
        You won't ever have a chance with some agencies, but you may very well have a shot with others. You'll have to do some investigating on hiring standards for various agencies.

        For my department you would be a permanent DQ because of the prescription medication abuse. Our policy allows only ONE time use of a stimulant under age 23. Other departments may be more lenient. Your MJ use would be another disqualifier for us. Typically, anything over five times would no longer be considered "experimental", but rather habitual use. But again, there are plenty of departments that would not DQ you as long as there is enough time between your application and last usage.

        Bottom line is that you won't know until you apply and go through the process. I don't believe that you're unemployable...but you've got extra baggage and additional hurdles to overcome.




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        • #5
          The real question is what is written record or people that has evidence of the things you've done? No point in saying anything if there isn't.

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          • #6
            Hall, I'd say you may have a shot at law enforcement employment. The prescription drug use is likely to be the biggest problem, but some agencies might consider that a youthful indiscretion.
            John from Maryland

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            • #7
              Hall,

              You have a chance. Be as honest as you can.
              Now go home and get your shine box!

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              • #8
                OP, the passage of time will help you tremendously. During that time, be a good citizen and build a solid resume to show those things are far behind you.

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                • #9
                  if it aint on paper it didn't happen....YOU'RE WELCOME

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                  • #10
                    Thanks guys. I’m hoping some years of good living will be enough to prove I’m worthy.

                    As for lying about about some things, I’m more comfortable taking my chances with the truth than I am lying and hoping the people they interview during a BI can also maintain the same story. Worst come to worst I’ll just work in the private sector the rest of my life and use these stories to teach my children that it really isn’t worth it.

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                    • #11
                      THATS the proper attitude!
                      Now go home and get your shine box!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Just be honest. Nothing beats honesty.

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                        • #13
                          Go for it. You’ll be fine. Apply to a few agencies and let the chips fall where they do. Good luck.

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