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  • Question Regarding DQ policies, etc

    Hello and thank you all for taking the time to view my thread.

    I will give some background information so that you can all attempt to answer my question in the best possible way.

    Roughly 3 years ago, I had processed for a Law Enforcement agency that required a polygraph. I had never taken one before, never knew how one worked, etc. Prior to the polygraph, I completed the written, physical, and Oral Board. All of which I passed and was then given a date for my polygraph. (Background packet was submitted some time before the oral board but after the physical). I went to take the polygraph and boy was I nervous, I thought of all the spy films and how nervous even the good guy looked while hooked up to such a contraption.

    During the polygraph, I was completely honest in regards to my answers. I didn't have to try to remember the answer I put in my background packet because they were the truth and not answers I put down to impress the department and take their watchful eyes off of me. The only issue I had was at the beginning of the polygraph, the examiner told me that he was going to ask me "Is today XXXX" and even though the answer was "No" I was to respond "Yes" which is what I did.

    HOWEVER, I did not know he was going to ask me that question again down the line (At the very end of the examination) and expect me to answer the same way. When we got to the end I was confused at if he wanted the real answer or the response he told me to give earlier. This threw me off so I answered incorrectly and he asked me why I did that. I apologized and explained my confusion and he moved along to end the polygraph examination and just ask a few questions if I wanted to come clean about anything that I was hiding. I told him, no, as I had been truthful with all my responses.

    He then told me I was free to go.

    The agency had advised that if we were ever disqualified at any point in the process, we would get a letter in the mail stating so.

    I never received a letter and the academy class came and passed and the eligible list I was on soon expired.

    I am now processing with different agency, who is going to contact that department regarding my polygraph and whether or not I passed or not. My current investigating officer said that if it shows I did not pass or was disqualified that it will be a problem for me in my current background investigation.

    I have no idea what to do because when I followed up with the agency I did the polygraph with, they told me it doesn't say you were disqualified but you did have some 'hiccups' on the polygraph.

    I have no idea how to interpret this. If any of you could give me some insight regarding the matter, whether it may be something I'd like to hear or not. I'd appreciate it.

  • #2
    Sounds like you were not disqualified. The "hiccups" would have been discussed between you and the background investigator and further review probably would have happened.

    A hiring list "expiring" isn't new. What often happens is an agency compiles a large list and begins the processes with them. This way, if one fails a portion there are others still in the same stage and in the running. You may not have been in the top of the remaining list at the end. The agency was looking for, let's say, 5 officers and you were number 7. If one of those 5 fail the academy, FTO etc, they can grab 6, etc.

    To answer the agency you are applying to, be truthful. Tell them you got in touch but did not get a straight answer. Tell them was was told to you because they will end up talking to the first agency and get a better answer that will help them evaluate what they need to do.

    I think you are just overthinking it all. Just be honest when it comes to the hiring process and that's the best you can do.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by morafiq View Post

      The agency had advised that if we were ever disqualified at any point in the process, we would get a letter in the mail stating so.




      I never received a letter and the academy class came and passed and the eligible list I was on soon expired.

      .
      See that quote-----------------------you answered your own question


      You were simply not selected for employment...................MANY places have an expiring eligibility list. You simply either re apply and get back on the list or continue elsewhere and when asked if you have ever applied someplace else ----disclose the fact and relate your experience if asked
      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
        What I'd suggest you do is review the replies my colleagues have given you. Your experience with the Polygraph is fairly typical. In reality, you neither pass nor do you fail, a Polygraph. It's merely an investigative tool, and a rather controversial one at that.

        The Polygraph can't tell whether or not you're lying anymore than the gas pump at your local Stop&Rob. As my colleague noted, you were not DQ'd merely not selected. There is a vast difference between the two. Keep at it, and good luck.

        Comment


        • #5
          I guess I'm nervous because my current investigative officer stated that "If you passed the polygraph why wouldn't they move you forward to the next step?" and I really don't have an answer for that other than what I already told her about the eligibility list. I guess I'm scared because I am literally one step away from the academy and don't want to be held back/passed over due to a misunderstanding.

          Comment


          • #6
            And the plot thickens

            So I called the agency again this morning... spoke to one of the officers in the division that handles applicants/applicant files. He briefly looked into my file and advised me based off of the 'hiccups' it could very well be considered a disqualification but he stated "We cannot disclose the details regarding why it may be considered that to any applicants as you may try to not mimic that same behavior/activity/etc again down the line when applying to another agency"

            This is why I have been so nervous because I get a, "Well you're not DQ'd because you'd receive a letter if that was the case" and then I get a "Well you could possibly be DQ'd but you wouldn't really know because we won't disclose that information to the candidate".

            SO LOST.

            I just called the officer who was in charge of the recruitment event during the time of my processing and she advised me "Unless something came up as a blatant deception on your polygraph, you were not disqualified but just not selected for employment. If you were however, blatantly dishonest on your polygraph, you would have received a letter stating so."

            I guess where my confusion comes in is that I'm getting two different responses from the same division that handles the applicant processing.

            Am I over-thinking this or would you all be just as confused as I am when receiving such responses?

            Comment


            • #7
              You are overthinking. It's very simple.

              What one agency views as a disqualified, another may not. The way one agency reads a poly may be interpreted differently at another. One agency takes the results as gospel, another a tool to use to look further. Even when you called the agency they said that I MIGHT be seen as a DQ but it didn't get there.

              Basically, like I said earlier, be honest and let the system play out. If there is reason for an investigator to ask more questions, they will and there is nothing you can do to "get ahead" of it. The process will play out in its own timeline and own pace.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by eaker995 View Post
                You are overthinking. It's very simple.

                What one agency views as a disqualified, another may not. The way one agency reads a poly may be interpreted differently at another. One agency takes the results as gospel, another a tool to use to look further. Even when you called the agency they said that I MIGHT be seen as a DQ but it didn't get there.

                Basically, like I said earlier, be honest and let the system play out. If there is reason for an investigator to ask more questions, they will and there is nothing you can do to "get ahead" of it. The process will play out in its own timeline and own pace.
                Much obliged... I feel like I've been driving myself nuts in regards to getting the answers to this. I guess I've been beating myself up regarding it because I just want some peace of mind that everything will be 'alright'. I've always been drawn to law enforcement since a child and my mentor for the last 10 years of my life has been a law enforcement officer, now retired, he taught me many things and knew I wanted to follow in his footsteps of taking on a career where I get to serve my community and belong to something much greater than just myself. I've been attempting to get hired for several years now.... this is the closest I've been to receiving the phone call for the academy and I don't want anything to keep me from it is all.

                Comment


                • #9
                  It's simple, it's also easy for me to say, you're over thinking the whole episode. As a side note, agencies rarely if ever disclose the reason an applicant was non selected. While I can understand your anxiety, academies are rather like streetcars. There'll be another one along before too long.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    With respect to agencies you apply with in the future, it is rare that a department fails you on a background based solely on a DQ from another agency.

                    Every department has different DQ standards, so grounds for DQ with one agency my not meet the criteria for DQ with another. In addition, each agency is responsible for conducting its own investigation and it would be rude to subpoena background investigators from another agency to testify at a DQ appeals hearing because your department was too lazy to conduct its own investigation. Finally, It would be even more embarrassing if it turned out the investigators from another agency did a shoddy investigation, their facts weren’t substantiated and you were relying on them for your DQ criteria because you didn’t conduct your own investigation.

                    What will happen is BIs from every agency you are applying with will look at your background packages from other departments. If there is derogatory information they will conduct their own investigation into those areas and determine if the matter meets their departments particular criteria for DQ.
                    Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by L-1 View Post
                      With respect to agencies you apply with in the future, it is rare that a department fails you on a background based solely on a DQ from another agency.

                      Every department has different DQ standards, so grounds for DQ with one agency my not meet the criteria for DQ with another. In addition, each agency is responsible for conducting its own investigation and it would be rude to subpoena background investigators from another agency to testify at a DQ appeals hearing because your department was too lazy to conduct its own investigation. Finally, It would be even more embarrassing if it turned out the investigators from another agency did a shoddy investigation, their facts weren’t substantiated and you were relying on them for your DQ criteria because you didn’t conduct your own investigation.

                      What will happen is BIs from every agency you are applying with will look at your background packages from other departments. If there is derogatory information they will conduct their own investigation into those areas and determine if the matter meets their departments particular criteria for DQ.
                      Much obliged for the detailed response. I've come a long way in my life in pursuit of a career in law enforcement and have always strived to do my best to be a positive candidate. I appreciate all the information you all have provided me and information that you may continue to provide. Greatly appreciate it and I wish and hope that you all stay safe at your respected departments/agencies/etc.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Can I add on another question to this thread??

                        My question is in regards to dealing with my investigating officer. Here is the story, my investigating officer is very polite and not always short with me. (Some people have told me their investigating officers are super short and aggressive with him/her). My issue is that I've been passed up for the academy twice now with this one agency and the reason behind it is always "missing information". The information however is not information that I have not provided but information that my investigator needs to obtain on her own accord.

                        Here is where it gets frustrating. This agency has 2 academies a year, one in the winter and one in the summer. My investigator tends to wait until about a month before either of the academies go in and then starts to work on our files again. I'm assuming during the other months she's processing the newer candidates who are not going to be headed into the academy too quickly.

                        I guess what I'm getting at is, how can I follow up with my investigator and ask her how she's doing with my file without irritating her? Sometimes if I ask for a follow up on my file to confirm if there are any holds/paperwork I need to turn in/etc she tells me I don't have your file in my hand currently but I don't believe so and then BAM! It's close to academy time and she tells me a couple days before that she needs to get this and that. At the beginning of our background process we were given our investigator's SGT's contact info but I don't want to step on her toes.

                        Any advice??

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by morafiq View Post
                          Can I add on another question to this thread??

                          My question is in regards to dealing with my investigating officer. Here is the story, my investigating officer is very polite and not always short with me. (Some people have told me their investigating officers are super short and aggressive with him/her). My issue is that I've been passed up for the academy twice now with this one agency and the reason behind it is always "missing information". The information however is not information that I have not provided but information that my investigator needs to obtain on her own accord.

                          Here is where it gets frustrating. This agency has 2 academies a year, one in the winter and one in the summer. My investigator tends to wait until about a month before either of the academies go in and then starts to work on our files again. I'm assuming during the other months she's processing the newer candidates who are not going to be headed into the academy too quickly.

                          I guess what I'm getting at is, how can I follow up with my investigator and ask her how she's doing with my file without irritating her? Sometimes if I ask for a follow up on my file to confirm if there are any holds/paperwork I need to turn in/etc she tells me I don't have your file in my hand currently but I don't believe so and then BAM! It's close to academy time and she tells me a couple days before that she needs to get this and that. At the beginning of our background process we were given our investigator's SGT's contact info but I don't want to step on her toes.

                          Any advice??
                          Don't tick off your investigating officer.......................

                          The investigation and it's process is not something you have any control over
                          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


                          • #14
                            I'm just worried because my exam expires this upcoming December Iowa. I missed the past 2 classes due to last minute 'paperwork' issues. However, I understand you already have experience with LE situations and processing so I will take your word for it and not make any attempts to 'tick off' my investigating officer.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by morafiq View Post
                              I'm just worried because my exam expires this upcoming December Iowa. I missed the past 2 classes due to last minute 'paperwork' issues. However, I understand you already have experience with LE situations and processing so I will take your word for it and not make any attempts to 'tick off' my investigating officer.
                              The bottom line is that you don't have any control over the process after you turn in the paperwork and finish the testings.

                              It then is owned by the agency----------------and they really don't care about YOU ----they care about crossing T's and dotting I's


                              If you tick an investigator off------------you run the risk of your package going to the bottom of the pile
                              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

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