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Real People Making a Real Difference


Would you like to make a real difference?

Knowing things are better because you showed up. We think that's one of the best feelings there is. If you do too, you might make a good Salinas Police Officer. Read on...

What we look for

The most important quality we're looking for is good character: people who are honest, who will do the right thing, and who have a strong desire to serve.

Every candidate goes through a thorough background check, which looks at:

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Who's eligible?

Many different kinds of people make good police officers -- male, female -- big, medium, or small -- from all kinds of backgrounds. What unites them is that commitment to making a difference for the better.

You must also:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or have applied for citizenship before application
  • Have a valid California Driver’s License.
  • Have a high School diploma or GED
  • Be at least 20½ at time of application and 21 years of age at time of appointment
  • Be able to pass the medical/fitness test and a thorough background check.

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What's the training like?

Police officer trainees attend the Academy, which is a full-time, 888-hour, intensive course that satisfies the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) minimum training requirements for California entry-level peace officers. The course typically meets Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m., lasts approximately six months, and is designed for recruits who can dedicate their full attention and effort.

Following the Academy, field training consists of 20 weeks of intensive on-the-job training and daily performance evaluations. Officers are required to meet specific performance standards in 31 performance categories before being certified for solo patrol duty. After completion of the FTO program, each officer is assigned to a patrol team. During this time, the officer is evaluated monthly by their patrol sergeant. As the officers near the completion of their probationary period, each is assigned to a specific team/watch. Officers who have performed at an acceptable level and pass their probationary period are recommended for retention as permanent employees.

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What's the pay like?

It's not why we do it, but the pay is very good, and so are the benefits.

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What's the job like?

Here's how just some of our current officers describe it:

"As a police officer, this is the place to work. You will learn more here, at a quicker rate, than almost any other city in California. The atmosphere of family and camaraderie is like no other."

"The work is never boring and you are constantly learning on the job."

"The activity here is amazing and my fellow officers are second to none!!"

"It is a community oriented organization and I have great coworkers."

"Instant gratification for problems solved in my neighborhood."

"Salinas has a sense of camaraderie that does not exist in other agencies. I have developed lifelong friendships with other employees that continue long after retirement. I have also had the opportunity to meet a wide variety of people in the community."

"You are exposed to different types of calls for service where other agencies hardly see. I have done things here in Salinas that other Law Enforcement Officers only dream about."

"It is the people that make up SPD. That includes everyone from all of the civilian positions to sworn. We are one big family."

"Very proactive department, team oriented, best training, good sergeants. Other departments don't have the team effort that I see here."

"The department has a well earned reputation for being professional, well experienced, and well trained. Salinas is a unique place to work and live."


When I go to a call, I'm going to help as much as I can. When I leave a call, I want them to feel I've done everything I can, and that I care about what's happening in their lives.



What do I like most about my job? The people that I work with -- my partners -- and the teamwork. We work together very closely and we know each other by name. To me that is very powerful... having good partners makes all the difference.



Question of the Day

What can I do if I see a car parked in my neighborhood which I think may be abandoned?

The City of Salinas has people specifically designated to handle abandoned vehicles and long-term parking problems. These problems are generally handled on a complaint basis. The abandoned vehicle office hours are Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m. The phone number, day or night, is (831) 758-7316.

The following information will help you determine whether or not a vehicle has been abandoned or is a long-term parking problem:


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