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  • Special Police

    I was wondering if any of you can tell me about the process of becoming a 'special police officer'. I know their general guidelines and generally about who uses them / what for etc. But the process is what I'm interested in. Ive seen a few places that have SPOs, who for all intents and purposes appear to be full LEOs, have been to a local academy, etc. Then I've seen some that dont carry firearms (company/school policy?), and I dont think have attended an academy. I'm just wondering how the system works - or if all have to attend a MD academy. I see in a previous thread that they are not entitled to enforce MV law, but if they go to an academy that teaches it, they can. So assuming this is the whole story, some dont attend the whole sha-bang.

    Another thing is, a local college near me was recently hiring 'Public Safety Officer's', but down the bottom stated 'must meet all the qualifications necessary or required to become a Maryland Special Police Officer' - or something to that effect. But nothing else. So no PT requirements, no mention of training, etc. Just wondering how this all fits together.

    As always, I appreciate the help.

  • #2
    Originally posted by MisterSU View Post
    I was wondering if any of you can tell me about the process of becoming a 'special police officer'. I know their general guidelines and generally about who uses them / what for etc. But the process is what I'm interested in. Ive seen a few places that have SPOs, who for all intents and purposes appear to be full LEOs, have been to a local academy, etc. Then I've seen some that dont carry firearms (company/school policy?), and I dont think have attended an academy. I'm just wondering how the system works - or if all have to attend a MD academy. I see in a previous thread that they are not entitled to enforce MV law, but if they go to an academy that teaches it, they can. So assuming this is the whole story, some dont attend the whole sha-bang.

    Another thing is, a local college near me was recently hiring 'Public Safety Officer's', but down the bottom stated 'must meet all the qualifications necessary or required to become a Maryland Special Police Officer' - or something to that effect. But nothing else. So no PT requirements, no mention of training, etc. Just wondering how this all fits together.

    As always, I appreciate the help.
    As far as i know in Maryland you dont have to go to a full academy to become an SPO. There is only one college that requires it that I know of and thats PGCC. Thats mostly because they want MPCTC certified officers but the can only have SPO status. SPO differs from state to state. Just because you are an SPO dosnt mean that you have to be armed. It would be nice though. As you may aleady know. SPO's have all the authority of a police officer on property owned ONLY and may only go beyond those limits if it is the case a fresh pursuit. ( the person committed the crime on the property and attempted to flee) Its pretty easy to get an SPO license in Maryland honestly. I am not sure if you get sworn in to be an SPO. I know in D.C. you do. basically you just have to have a clean record. I think they just run your name through NCIC or i could be wrong.
    "Damned if you do and damned if you dont"

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    • #3
      SPO's have all the authority of a police officer on property owned ONLY and may only go beyond those limits if it is the case a fresh pursuit.
      Also property that is leased, and used by the agency that the SPO licensed is issued. As for "pursuits" you have to have attended and graduated a basic police trainng course (the academy). Then you can run laser and write MV infractions on roads adjacent to the property.

      Its pretty easy to get an SPO license in Maryland honestly. I am not sure if you get sworn in to be an SPO.
      To become an SPO, you fill out the same MSP licensing packet that security guards and PI's fill out. You have to get your fingerprints done, etc. After your background is completed they will notify you to go get sworn in at a court house. SPO's are basically security guards with arrest authority. Excluding those agencies that have sent their personnel through an academy.
      "Intelligence plus character that is the goal of true education." - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

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      • #4
        thanks for the clear up
        "Damned if you do and damned if you dont"

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        • #5
          Originally posted by DPS55 View Post
          thanks for the clear up
          Not many SPO's in Maryland are actually certified through the MPTC. The ones that are certified, their authority still only allows them to operate at their place of employment. No powers off-duty, etc. Even if an incient occurs where they work and it steps off of the property, then must notify the local LE. They are not allowed to pursue, etc.
          "An excuse is worse and more terrible than a lie, for an excuse is a lie guarded."

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          • #6
            Originally posted by DPS55 View Post
            thanks for the clear up
            No problem!
            "Intelligence plus character that is the goal of true education." - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

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            • #7
              So do all SPO's have to be sworn in Maryland?
              "Damned if you do and damned if you dont"

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              • #8
                Originally posted by DPS55 View Post
                So do all SPO's have to be sworn in Maryland?
                No. SPO's are not Sworn Law Enforcement Officers. They are Special Police Officers. They status/authority is given to them by the Governor and their Employer. They do not have any authority off of work or from the property in which they work at. Same as certain colleges, such as Howard U. in D.C. They are Special Police officers, not Sworn LEO's.
                "An excuse is worse and more terrible than a lie, for an excuse is a lie guarded."

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by irishlad2nv View Post
                  No. SPO's are not Sworn Law Enforcement Officers. They are Special Police Officers. They status/authority is given to them by the Governor and their Employer. They do not have any authority off of work or from the property in which they work at. Same as certain colleges, such as Howard U. in D.C. They are Special Police officers, not Sworn LEO's.
                  I would like to crituque that. SPO's at ALL University's or College's in in D.C. are in fact sworn in after they complete there training. INCLUDING Howard University.
                  "Damned if you do and damned if you dont"

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by DPS55 View Post
                    I would like to crituque that. SPO's at ALL University's or College's in in D.C. are in fact sworn in after they complete there training. INCLUDING Howard University.
                    Special Police in D.C are not Sworn Police Officers, since they are not Police Officers. Since you are going to be working at Howard...here'ssome insight for you.

                    . The term "special police officer," is any person who is commissioned pursuant to the provisions of D.C. Code, § 4-114 (1981) and other regulations which have been approved pursuant to this act, and who may be authorized to carry a weapon.

                    D. Special Police Officers.

                    1. Special police officers are privately commissioned police officers with full arrest powers within an area or premises which the officer has been employed to protect. The commission is conditional and is required to be renewed each year.

                    2. Special police officers may be appointed by the Mayor for duty in connection with the property of or under the charge of a corporation or individual requesting the appointment. Special police officers shall be strictly confined in their authority to the particular place or property which they are commissioned to protect.

                    3. Commissions issued to special police officers shall specify the following:

                    a. The particular place or property they are commissioned to protect (this information is normally kept in the form of a contract list which is available for inspection at the Security Officers ManageÂ*ment Branch);

                    b. Any waiver of the uniform requirement;

                    c. Firearm authorization status; and

                    d. In the case of DCMR Title 6-A, Chapter 11, Section 1101.2, any requirement for storage or special provisions for transportation of firearms or other dangerous weapons.

                    4. Special police officers are normally in uniform as required by DCMR Title 6-A, Chapter 11, Section 1109, however, upon request a uniform waiver may be granted.

                    5. Special police officers may be authorized to bear firearms, however, they must meet additional requirements which includes completing an annual firearms training course.

                    6. The holder of a special police officer's commission is not authorized to take police action on public space, except when in fresh pursuit from an authorized location. The holder of a special police officer's commission may not take police action on private property, unless their employing agency has contracted with the owner of the private property to render security related services. Violations may result in the revocation of both the agency's license and special police officer's commission.

                    7. Special police officers are explicitly prohibited from engaging in roving patrols on public space. However, officers may travel upon public space to get from one job site to another and the most direct route must be taken. Any deviations of armed special police officers traveling between job sites may subject the officer to arrest for firearms violations and the revocation of their commission.

                    8. No person shall be appointed as a special police officer pursuant to D.C. Code §4- 114, and DCMR Title 6-A, Chapter 11, unless they meet the following requireÂ*ments:

                    a. Have reached the age of twenty-one (21) years;
                    b. Be a citizen of the United States;
                    c. Be of good moral character;
                    d. Be approved for appointment by the Chief of Police
                    "An excuse is worse and more terrible than a lie, for an excuse is a lie guarded."

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by DPS55 View Post
                      So do all SPO's have to be sworn in Maryland?
                      Yes, they are "sworn" in. When you recieve your letter from the licensing division of MSP, it will state that you have X amount of time to go to the court house to be sworn in as a SPO. Once you are sworn in proof of swearing in must be sent to the licensing division. You're taking the "oath of office" and swearing that you won't abuse it.

                      The SPO laws of Maryland are very confusing when you read it. However, in my understanding they're basiclly security officers with arrest authority.
                      "Intelligence plus character that is the goal of true education." - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by irishlad2nv View Post
                        Special Police in D.C are not Sworn Police Officers, since they are not Police Officers. Since you are going to be working at Howard...here'ssome insight for you.

                        . The term "special police officer," is any person who is commissioned pursuant to the provisions of D.C. Code, § 4-114 (1981) and other regulations which have been approved pursuant to this act, and who may be authorized to carry a weapon.

                        D. Special Police Officers.

                        1. Special police officers are privately commissioned police officers with full arrest powers within an area or premises which the officer has been employed to protect. The commission is conditional and is required to be renewed each year.

                        2. Special police officers may be appointed by the Mayor for duty in connection with the property of or under the charge of a corporation or individual requesting the appointment. Special police officers shall be strictly confined in their authority to the particular place or property which they are commissioned to protect.

                        3. Commissions issued to special police officers shall specify the following:

                        a. The particular place or property they are commissioned to protect (this information is normally kept in the form of a contract list which is available for inspection at the Security Officers Manageªment Branch);

                        b. Any waiver of the uniform requirement;

                        c. Firearm authorization status; and

                        d. In the case of DCMR Title 6-A, Chapter 11, Section 1101.2, any requirement for storage or special provisions for transportation of firearms or other dangerous weapons.

                        4. Special police officers are normally in uniform as required by DCMR Title 6-A, Chapter 11, Section 1109, however, upon request a uniform waiver may be granted.

                        5. Special police officers may be authorized to bear firearms, however, they must meet additional requirements which includes completing an annual firearms training course.

                        6. The holder of a special police officer's commission is not authorized to take police action on public space, except when in fresh pursuit from an authorized location. The holder of a special police officer's commission may not take police action on private property, unless their employing agency has contracted with the owner of the private property to render security related services. Violations may result in the revocation of both the agency's license and special police officer's commission.

                        7. Special police officers are explicitly prohibited from engaging in roving patrols on public space. However, officers may travel upon public space to get from one job site to another and the most direct route must be taken. Any deviations of armed special police officers traveling between job sites may subject the officer to arrest for firearms violations and the revocation of their commission.

                        8. No person shall be appointed as a special police officer pursuant to D.C. Code §4- 114, and DCMR Title 6-A, Chapter 11, unless they meet the following requireªments:

                        a. Have reached the age of twenty-one (21) years;
                        b. Be a citizen of the United States;
                        c. Be of good moral character;
                        d. Be approved for appointment by the Chief of Police
                        All college and University SPO's go through the same police academy which is the University Consortium which is prescribed by the Security Officer's Management Branch of the District of Columbia.Your statement applies to SPO's that are appointed to that position that work for a private company. Not a University or college. (Yes I know that Howard is a private University) I know my staus when i finish the academy. Thanks
                        "Damned if you do and damned if you dont"

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by DPS55 View Post
                          All college and University SPO's go through the same police academy which is the University Consortium which is prescribed by the Security Officer's Management Branch of the District of Columbia.Your statement applies to SPO's that are appointed to that position that work for a private company. Not a University or college. (Yes I know that Howard is a private University) I know my staus when i finish the academy. Thanks
                          Confused as to why you made your statement earlier on about SPO's in DC being Sworn? One thing you will have to understand is you won't be a Police Officer. Meaning, you have no authority off-duty, can't carry your duty weapon off-duty..(Howard use to or still turns in their weapon daily). SPO's gnerally are not looked upon as "Police" and in DC, their is no regulated training requirements for SPO's or Security Guards.
                          "An excuse is worse and more terrible than a lie, for an excuse is a lie guarded."

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by irishlad2nv View Post
                            Confused as to why you made your statement earlier on about SPO's in DC being Sworn? One thing you will have to understand is you won't be a Police Officer. Meaning, you have no authority off-duty, can't carry your duty weapon off-duty..(Howard use to or still turns in their weapon daily). SPO's gnerally are not looked upon as "Police" and in DC, their is no regulated training requirements for SPO's or Security Guards.
                            actually.. thats change(d) or is still in the works. ALL security/spos in DC are mandated to attend training. Not sure on the specifics.. but some kind of training is now mandatory.
                            "Intelligence plus character that is the goal of true education." - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by irishlad2nv View Post
                              Confused as to why you made your statement earlier on about SPO's in DC being Sworn? One thing you will have to understand is you won't be a Police Officer. Meaning, you have no authority off-duty, can't carry your duty weapon off-duty..(Howard use to or still turns in their weapon daily). SPO's gnerally are not looked upon as "Police" and in DC, their is no regulated training requirements for SPO's or Security Guards.
                              For Universitys and Colleges there are requirements that must be met. I know what my department heads told me. I guess the only way to make you beleive is to have you talk to someone. Contract companys No. Universitys and colleges Yes. For example CALEA only gives SWORN law enforcement agencys accredidation. George Washington University is in fact currently accreditted by CALEA and Howard is working towards that goal as well. All college and University SPO's go through the University Consortium Police Academy as prescribed by the Security Officer's Management Branch of the District of Columbia. We are basically sworn to uphold the rules and regulations of the University. The jurisdiction of course is the prperty owned as well as the streets adjacent to the property owned.
                              Last edited by DPS55; 05-15-2007, 06:55 AM.
                              "Damned if you do and damned if you dont"

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