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  • Not the usual background question...

    This is my first post here. Im sure these background threads get tiring, but mine isn’t a question Ive found asked. Im hoping for honest opinions or advice.
    Straightforward version for those that don’t want a life story: Can a person whose spouse is in prison become LEO, or any LE job for that matter? I do not intend to conceal or alter any aspect of my life and past within any review, or test. Other than my credit, which is coming along finally, this is the only thing I can see barring me from pursuing the career I want. Is it plausible for me to continue on reaching my career goal as an LEO, or should I throw in the towel and find a different aspiration?


    Long Story: I have never posted this on any public forum and very few people in my life even know of my situation. Guess I need to come to terms with sharing it now if I am going to reach my goal. I hoped to join the Marine Corps from a young age but let countless people talk me down, including my husband which at the time was just boyfriend. I’ve always felt the desire to serve, but with children now I can’t be away for the length that would be needed for recruit training, not without being home each night, IF the Marines would even take me with having children in my situation. We’ve been together for 11 years, married for 6....he’s been in the last 5...Right after confirming the pregnancy of our 2nd. I give you this information cause I know some women seek out and marry inmates after the arrest and sentencing, which I would see more likely causing issues for various reasons. In my case I knew him long before, which may or may not make a difference.
    I knew nothing of what he had done until the day he was arrested, and not in detail for about another 2 weeks. I’m 26 now. Its not drug related

    I know several COs both from my county and a nearby one, as well as a few LEOs here in town that know of this, (joys of night shift, you get to know everyone ) and my desire to get into law enforcement and they all say I should still have a chance, and that it shouldn’t be something that can be held against me. However I’ve applied for the county as support staff to get my foot in the door so to speak, several times, with them as references as well as others on my resume and I really do believe my last name is preventing me from getting on.

    I still live in the arresting county, but the deputies and COs really respected my husband before his arrest and during his stay in county so if my name is causing an issue it would be someone higher up I would imagine, or they simply cannot hire me due to this. They are constantly replacing dispatchers and other support staff and I am calling on a regular basis, but get the excuse of they are not hiring at this moment. It may just be paranoia on my part.
    With that all said I can always bypass doing county first. It just makes the process a little smoother, Back to PD. The department here does not require a college degree, unless you want to move up to FTO and beyond, in which an associates or higher is needed. However the city will pay for your tuition after 1 year of employment with them if you want to pursue a degree. This is how most of our LEOs have continued education or are doing so at this time.

    I’m sure I could have just left this with the short story, but I believe a general explanation is needed with this since, as far as I know, it’s not too common of a situation. I have no clue what, if any of this, could DQ me. For all I know, having not separated from him immediately after arrest may be the detail that hurts me. Basically I need to know if my friends are giving me false hope so they don’t have to be the ones that "let me down", or do I have a legitimate chance?

    I have no tickets, or arrests. Never even been pulled over. I smoked marijuana as a teen, which that has been 8 or 9 years now.

    If any insight could be provided it will be greatly appreciated.

    I’ve been viewing this site for quite some time, and I must say Thank you all for the information provided here. Even if it turns out to not benefit me directly, you’ve helped many, I’m sure.

  • #2
    I would say it depends on the agency and their specific policy. If they don't have one for these matters, it may just be up to the discretion of the hiring folks. Also, I'm sure they will want to know why he is in prison and the circumstances behind it. I suspect that may be a big issue. If he's been in for 5 years, I can imagine it being a serious felony. This will most certainly be a huge factor.

    My personal opinion is definitely do not throw in the towel until you're officially disqualified. I would say it may be an uphill battle, but certainly not a guarantee that you won't get hired. Just do what is asked of you and hope for the best, keeping in mind that you may not get where you want to be. Plan accordingly.

    _DF
    sigpic
    __________________

    "I pity guys like you, I truly do. Everything you own and have you can thank the job for and still you despise it. I don't understand how any man can choose a career, hate it from the beginning, not have the balls to leave, and then complain about it once he's retired."

    -Thee Rant (surprisingly)
    __________________

    Originally posted by NYCTNT
    DF,

    Why do you bother?

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by DigitalFrenchie View Post
      My personal opinion is definitely do not throw in the towel until you're officially disqualified. I would say it may be an uphill battle, but certainly not a guarantee that you won't get hired. Just do what is asked of you and hope for the best, keeping in mind that you may not get where you want to be. Plan accordingly.

      _DF
      I agree
      Last edited by Iowa #1603; 01-02-2014, 04:29 PM.
      Since some people need to be told by notes in crayon .......Don't PM me with without prior permission. If you can't discuss the situation in the open forum ----it must not be that important

      My new word for the day is FOCUS, when someone irritates you tell them to FOCUS

      Comment


      • #4
        Thank you for your reply, and yes, the charge is a serious felony. I fear that they will see it as a huge flaw in judgement and character on my part, especially with continuing our marriage after the arrest.

        Is this something I should call and ask the HR department about, Or is that really even common practice to do? Though I'm sure I will get the usual jawdropped studdering as soon as I ask, and most probably will not know the answer.
        I have some financial responsibilities to get situated and settled before I begin applying, I think I will be set by summer. I wanted a generalized consensus of whether I may still have a chance as I'm not sure on what all the major dis-qualifiers are, especially when it involves a spouse. Thank you again

        Comment


        • #5
          Can a person whose spouse is in prison become LEO, or any LE job for that matter?
          Our department has an "associating with persons of low moral character" clause... and there HAS been one deputy fired in recent memory for associating with a felon and former inmate... so as mentioned it depends on the prospective agency's policy.

          Not to be harsh, but if you really want to pursue LE as a career your best bet is divorce.

          Is this something I should call and ask the HR department about, Or is that really even common practice to do?
          Sheriff's departments everywhere are a strange kettle of fish. A sheriff's deputy is just that, a person who acts as the personal representative of the sheriff himself and assists the sheriff in performing his duties as mandated by law. In our department, after all the hiring and backgrounds and whatnot, the list of names is compiled by the undersheriff and goes to to the sheriff himself for final approval. He reviews the files, maybe calls a few for interviews if he's not sure, then gives a yea or nay to each individual... he can and will turn anybody or everybody down for any reason or no reason at all.

          This is his department and his deputies, and he won't have somebody on his team he isn't comfortable with no matter what the HR boffins say.

          So, if you're applying to a SO anywhere in the West you may be running into the same sort of thing, especially in the county where the incident occurred.

          Apply out of county, to a larger PD or other agency run more by HR rules and regulations... and distance yourself from the problem as much as possible. Consider using your maiden name.

          If/when he gets out you'll have a whole slew of problems. Your firearm will be an issue, it can't be anywhere that he can have constructive possession of it. Does he have criminal associates? Will you be able to talk to him about work in confidence? Who will be coming over to the house? Will he be committing additional crimes?

          You may not have known about his criminal activity, but few criminals start their career with a major felony.
          Last edited by tanksoldier; 01-02-2014, 11:34 AM.
          "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

          Comment


          • #6
            The other issue I see is your child care issues. You made mention of having to be home each night. As a rookie, you will have little to no choice in your assignment, so what happens when you get assigned to evenings, or midnights, or a swing shift? What happens when the academy runs late or has evening/low light training? What happens when you shag a late call or crime scene?

            I have a huge issue with people who claim to have desires that run deep but allow people to talk them out of their supposed dreams. What happens if and when you do become a cop? Are you going to allow the same influence over your decision making skills at work? People going to be able to talk their way out of arrests or tickets? Just being blunt.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by tanksoldier View Post
              Our department has an "associating with persons of low moral character" clause... and there HAS been one deputy fired in recent memory for associating with a felon and former inmate... so as mentioned it depends on the prospective agency's policy.

              Not to be harsh, but if you really want to pursue LE as a career your best bet is divorce.
              The thought has crossed my mind as well, and have been wrapping my mind around it for about 6 months now. I wont get into that though as that will go off topic.
              Originally posted by careerchange#2 View Post
              The other issue I see is your child care issues. You made mention of having to be home each night. As a rookie, you will have little to no choice in your assignment, so what happens when you get assigned to evenings, or midnights, or a swing shift? What happens when the academy runs late or has evening/low light training? What happens when you shag a late call or crime scene?
              I should have phrased it as being home often, instead of everynight. 13 weeks, plus school is quite a stretch to go without my children, and I believe my family would pull their hair out by the time I got out, hehe. I work overnights now, 8 on and 6 off. I generally stay away for the week Im working so I can get sleep so we are all very accustomed to me not coming home for short stents, or me leaving before supper and not getting home till everyone has left for the day for their own duties.
              Originally posted by careerchange#2 View Post
              I have a huge issue with people who claim to have desires that run deep but allow people to talk them out of their supposed dreams. What happens if and when you do become a cop? Are you going to allow the same influence over your decision making skills at work? People going to be able to talk their way out of arrests or tickets? Just being blunt.
              Be as blunt as you would like. Id rather truthful answers than trying to save my feelings. I understand where you are coming from, and No Sir, I make my own decisions now, I just seek guidance when I need it. Thank you for mentioning that cause I hadn't even thought of the irony...When I was ready to ship to MEPs for the Marines, I was told, by my now husband, if I left he wouldn't wait for me. So I let my hormones take control, let people tell me its a man's job, and ill just get myself killed. I made quite possibly one of the biggest mistakes I ever have.. but here we are...roles reversed, and Im expected to sit idly by.

              I should have put my foot down, and bettered myself, my education, and reached my goals for both the benefit of me and my family, as well as served my country... And i fully intend to do that now. I've held a management position now for 3 years, as well as started my own business shortly after his arrest. Originally he saw it as a slap in the face, me wanting to go into LE, I told him to suck it up.
              Last edited by lmbrouvx; 01-02-2014, 12:54 PM.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by tanksoldier View Post



                Sheriff's departments everywhere are a strange kettle of fish. A sheriff's deputy is just that, a person who acts as the personal representative of the sheriff himself and assists the sheriff in performing his duties as mandated by law. In our department, after all the hiring and backgrounds and whatnot, the list of names is compiled by the undersheriff and goes to to the sheriff himself for final approval. He reviews the files, maybe calls a few for interviews if he's not sure, then gives a yea or nay to each individual... he can and will turn anybody or everybody down for any reason or no reason at all.

                This is his department and his deputies, and he won't have somebody on his team he isn't comfortable with no matter what the HR boffins say.

                So, if you're applying to a SO anywhere in the West you may be running into the same sort of thing, especially in the county where the incident occurred.

                Apply out of county, to a larger PD or other agency run more by HR rules and regulations... and distance yourself from the problem as much as possible. Consider using your maiden name.
                Thank you I will give that a shot. There are a few departments near here that have excellent reputations I was considering applying to

                Originally posted by tanksoldier View Post
                If/when he gets out you'll have a whole slew of problems. Your firearm will be an issue, it can't be anywhere that he can have constructive possession of it. Does he have criminal associates? Will you be able to talk to him about work in confidence? Who will be coming over to the house? Will he be committing additional crimes?

                You may not have known about his criminal activity, but few criminals start their career with a major felony.
                Its a tough situation and hard to explain. I apologize for being vague. The circumstances leading up to it, Im not sure Im ready to share on a public forum. However as for his criminal career, He has a misdemeanor possession of marijuana charge from 2002 which was dismissed after drug court graduation in 2003, which is the extent of any violations aside from traffic tickets which all happened prior to that arrest. I will definitely spend some time thinking on the topics you mentioned.

                Comment


                • #9
                  None of the services will take you.

                  Most places will pass on you for any type of position.

                  If you get hired as a LEO and your husband gets out, what do you plan to do with your firearm since your husband can't be around one?

                  He is going to be an albatross around your neck for as long as you remain married.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by just joe View Post
                    None of the services will take you.

                    Most places will pass on you for any type of position.

                    If you get hired as a LEO and your husband gets out, what do you plan to do with your firearm since your husband can't be around one?

                    He is going to be an albatross around your neck for as long as you remain married.





                    This^^^is a defining post, and covers much of what I had intended to offer you. Your spouse's status as a felon, and upon his release as a former felon are going to cause enormous problems for you being employed in this profession. They will, in all probability, act as a bar to your employment in either a sworn or non sworn capacity.

                    There is the "association" aspect with a felon, notwithstanding your marriage. There is a problem with storing/maintaining your duty firearm, or personal firearm(s) for that matter. He can't be near one. To do so would be a violation of Parole or whatever status he is released into.

                    I'm not suggesting you seek a divorce or an annulment of your marriage. I do suggest, as respectfully as I can, that you seek another field of endeavor.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      In addition to the felon/gun access issue upon your husband’s released, there is another consideration as well.

                      For several years now gangs and criminal groups have been recruiting wives, girlfriends and relatives with clean backgrounds to take positions in law enforcement so they can gather intelligence on police activity, access confidential databases, identify home address and family information on targeted police officers, etc. One of our own “clean” dispatchers was just arrested for using her position to facilitate drug and illegal weapon sales for a motorcycle gang. In one instance she ran the license plate of a vehicle that suspects believed was a law enforcement officer following them. If the return information suggested it was the police, the suspects said they were going to kill him.

                      Unless you have divorced your husband in every respect and there has been a clear separation, (physically, emotionally, minimal to no contact) for a significant period of time, it is highly unlikely any law enforcement agency (at least where I am) will hire you.
                      Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        My dept. has a very strict association policy and wouldn't touch you with a 10 foot pole.
                        Today's Quote:

                        "The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits."
                        Albert Einstein

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I'm replying through phone, so excuse typos and my inability to quote. This phone is more effective as a paper weight. Thank you all for your responses. It looks like i have alot to weigh and mull over, but after a few responses im starting to believe my chances are slim to none. I may still try my chances, however i know now not to go into it with unrealistic expectations.
                          When i say its a serious felony...his eligibility date is 2042. So the firearm issue wont arise for some time if at all. Divorce or not that is something i will have to figure out as i cant get rid of my guns.

                          I thought of another issue that will arise..Even after divorce my ties cannot be broken entirely as the children will still need to go to visitation. I cant keep them from their daddy. That decision is up to them when they are older.
                          Major sacrifices would have to occur either way. Thank you again everyone. This is what i needed to help collect my thoughts. I should have gotten an objective opinion a long time ago In other aspects of my life. I may not be in such a torn situation that i am in now.
                          I will seek out some info from the surrounding departments and see what their policies are on the matter

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            However as for his criminal career, He has a misdemeanor possession of marijuana charge from 2002 which was dismissed after drug court graduation in 2003, which is the extent of any violations aside from traffic tickets which all happened prior to that arrest.
                            That's what he got caught doing.

                            Divorce or not that is something i will have to figure out as i cant get rid of my guns.
                            The post above about parole conditions & firearms is slightly off. While it is true that a parolee may have as a condition of their parole that they not possess firearms, a convicted felon cannot possess a firearm EVER, including having "constructive possession". That means it can't be stored anywhere that the felon can access... they can't know the combination to the safe, it can't be left in a drawer or on the counter EVER, etc, etc... If it EVER is where they can access it YOU are committing a felony as well as the convicted felon.
                            Last edited by tanksoldier; 01-02-2014, 09:01 PM.
                            "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

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              My department's general orders state that you can't associate with known criminals or felons. There is no family exception. If I were you and I wanted to be in LE I would file for divorce. If he isn't eligible to get out until 2042 wont your kids be adults by then? It's up to them whether or not they want to see there father when he gets out.

                              This is just my opinion but it would be a waste of your life if he isn't getting out for another 30 years to stay with him. Move on with your life and career.

                              Comment

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