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State of Policing in NC

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  • State of Policing in NC

    Hi I’m 32 years old and looking to join a department in NC, especially the Raleigh/Charlotte areas. I have four years experience as a sworn and armed LEO for a small institutional police department in DC.

    Im wondering if anyone here can give me the lay of the land in terms of what’s going on in the policing world here as well as what’s going on with various departments and what they are looking for in a candidate. Id be grateful if anyone could offer their expertise.


  • #2
    First look at pay, both starting pay and top pay. Charlotte and Raleigh both pay well for NC. There are departments near those cities that also pay well, at least for NC.

    Second, look at the process to get from starting pay to top pay. I know Charlotte has a pay step system, that while not perfect, lays out pretty clearly the process to get to top pay. I would be leery of departments that did not have some kind of plan.

    Retirement is pretty much set by the state. I am unaware of any departments that do not use NCLGERS for new hires.

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    • #3
      Thanks for your response. I’ll be sure to check out NCLGERS. NC retirement looks labyrinthine to be sure. First glance it seems only a 5% 401K.

      Looks like in NC you have pretty conservative outlooks in dress and uniforms, no or limited tattoos no beards, smart uniforms with low profile outer vests (if outer vests are permitted) but are more free when it comes to take home vehicles, less numerous punitive laws against police and things of that nature than the DC area, which is nice.

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      • #4
        Retirement is much more than 401k. There is the pension, special separation allowance, and the 401k. There are several threads in the past few years discussing NC retirement.

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        • #5
          The better paying jobs tend to be in Mecklenburg and Wake counties. Those areas are not the most conservative areas. Charlotte and Raleigh are both cities. I would prefer to work in either of those cities over say Portland, but they are what they are.

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          • #6
            The beauty of my career being entirely post-Ferguson in a highly liberal and politicized city is that virtually any other part of the country is going to feel like a lot less pressure. Ive been told that it’s a lot harder on officers who have served both before and after.

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            • #7
              Thanks for your guidance

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              • #8
                Take home cars vary from agency to agency, as does morale and everything else. Would probably be able to help you narrow down some choices when you decide on either the Raleigh or Charlotte areas.
                John 15:13 - Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.

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                • #9
                  Thanks for responding,

                  Im probably going to stay in the Raleigh area Im putting some feelers out as far as Greensboro and Fayetteville. I put Charlotte on the list because I lived there for a bit and its a great city.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by pbodwyer View Post
                    Thanks for responding,

                    Im probably going to stay in the Raleigh area Im putting some feelers out as far as Greensboro and Fayetteville. I put Charlotte on the list because I lived there for a bit and its a great city.
                    Ok, so Im a Charlotte area Officer, so I hope some of those familair with the Raleigh area will comment on here and help you out! NC is a little different from most states, instead of applicants competing for agencies, its typically agencies competing for officers.
                    John 15:13 - Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.

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                    • #11
                      Yeah I noticed that lol. Recruitment is tight everywhere but it seems like the competition is a lot more overt here. From what I gather in the triangle area the knives are out for Durham and Raleigh and everyone is trying to poach their officers before their respective cities realize that they are chronically underpaying DPD and RPD relative to neighboring towns. It seems like a BLET related issue imo especially for the smaller departments. I would imagine the pool of qualified applicants willing to go to BLET on their own dime in this day and age is rather low.

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                      • #12
                        I would love to hear anything you can share about the Charlotte area as well CMPD is pretty high up on my list.

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                        • #13
                          Charlotte pays well. It is a large department with pretty much all of the pros and cons of being a large department. To my knowledge there is no retiree health insurance insurance benefit for new hires. That is a serious issue in my opinion, but I also do not know how common retiree health insurance is in NC. I do not believe it is common.

                          Take home cars are for special assignments and patrol officers who live in Charlotte or unincorporated Mecklenburg County.

                          Morale is what you make of it. Some will tell you their life was ruined when they started working there, many will say they are fairly content, many will say it is a decent job and they are happy with it.

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                          • #14
                            I don't work for Raleigh, but work in the area. If I am not mistaken, take home cars for them are pretty much for officers living in the city limits, and maybe only for the days worked. Departments in the surrounding area have take home car policies that are more broad. Don't necessarily be glamorized by "big" departments. Look at the surrounding departments too. There is greener grass than RPD and CMPD.

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