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MSP, PGPD, BCPD, Metro Police of DC, or US Park Police


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I am a CFII with 1500 hours and am interest in flying for law enforcement. I have heard good things about the Maryland State Police, PG County Police, and Baltimore City Police, but am exploring all of the options. I would like to be a uniformed officer (as opposed to a civilian pilot), but am open to either.

 

Does anyone know if any of the local or federal departments are hiring? What are their requirements? How many years on the street do they require? What are your opinions of the departments themselves?

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I am a CFII with 1500 hours and am interest in flying for law enforcement. I have heard good things about the Maryland State Police, PG County Police, and Baltimore City Police, but am exploring all of the options. I would like to be a uniformed officer (as opposed to a civilian pilot), but am open to either.

 

Does anyone know if any of the local or federal departments are hiring? What are their requirements? How many years on the street do they require? What are your opinions of the departments themselves?

 

Not too long ago, there was a crash at the MD state police helo dept & evidently it wasn't the first one. There was an article I read (sorry I cannot remember where) at the time that outlined the problems of the MD dept & about its imperfect maintenance & safety record, & about the possible closing of one or more of the units... Maybe someone else can provide details.

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Do not rule out the federal side.

 

Customs & Border Protection (CBP) does not require you to work the street before you fly. You can be hired as a pilot. Training is good, equipment is good, travel is good, retirement is good and the pay is better than most state & local agencies.

 

You have the hours. Just check the CBP website or www.usajobs and search, you will find it.

 

Good Luck,

 

edspilot

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One additional point about the federal law enforcement like DEA, FBI & ATF and maybe some others all requirement you to be an agent first (at least two to three years) on the street before transferring in the air program. You are hired as an agent first and then allowed to move into the flying side. There used to be NO career path in their air programs.

 

I mentioned CBP (formerly U.S. Customs Service Air Program) because they are hired as aircraft pilots first and trained to be law enforcement agents second. There is a career path in the air program there. The "old" border patrol pilots were also agents first and pilots second, at least it used to be that way.

 

I was hired by USCS as an aircraft pilot in 1986 and retired in 2006.

 

For the most part all are good, it is just different types of flying:

 

CBP (Border Patrol) Flying the boder in small fixed wing and helicopters looking for crossers/smugglers

 

CBP (former USCS Air) flying the border in helicopters and trubo-prop twins and jets. Also, stationed in other cities inside doing support to field agents. Operations other locations outside of the US too. When I was there we had 135 aircraft and 435 pilots, not sure now.

 

DEA: Support of field agents all over the US and central and south america in helicopters and small fixed wing and a few high-tech turbo-props.

 

FBI: Very similar to DEA just not too much outside of the country.

 

US Marshalls: Mostly large jets to transport prisners between prisons.

 

All have law enfrcement coverage for retirement purposes. A good thing for you.

 

 

Hope this helps & good luck!

 

edspilot

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The DEA Airwing has a fleet of over 100 aircraft domestic & international. Helicopters include the Bell 407 and 412, A-Star, MD 500 and 902. Airplanes include the Cessna 206, 208, and Citation, Lear 60, ATR-42, and King Air 350.

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palmfish:

 

That is great news about DEA and there equipment. Thanks for updating my info.

 

I guess the "real" difference between CBP and most of the other federal agencies is the:

 

 

CBP: you are hired as a pilot first then trained as a law enforcement officer

 

Most Others: you are hired as a agent/officer first and pilot second

 

 

palmfish, stay safe!

 

Good luck,

 

edspilot

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A few more possible differences...

 

As a DEA SA/P, you can apply for the airwing with only a PPL and a few hundred hours. DEA will train you for advanced ratings and build your flight time.

 

The DEA airwing doesn't have "Branches." There are a few RAC offices (on-site GS-14 supervisor), but many offices are just 1 to 3 GS-13 pilots on their own.

 

Do AIA's get assigned take-home G-rides? Hazardous Duty Flight Pay?

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palmfish:

 

Yes, CBP do get vehicles, the Availability Pay at 25%, and the law enforcement status 12D under FERS for retirement.

 

No, they do not get hazard pay. Reason is that they are hired for the pilot position. Where DEA (and others) there flying is an add-on to the agent duties.

 

 

edspilot

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Small clarification. You probably didn't mean it this way, but just in case...

 

Flying is not an "add-on" duty for DEA pilots. DEA pilots don't work cases - they are full-time pilots.

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palmfish:

 

 

The "add-on" was only ment to say, as far as I know, DEA does not hire direct off of the street into a GS 2181 (aircraft pilot) position with law enforcement coverage for retirement.

 

I believe DEA hires as a GS 1811 (criminial investigator) and then you are transferred into the air section but you still maintain the GS 1811 which is great.

 

I think we are saying the same thing. I am sure this is more info than most want to know but at least it is out there for interested parties to know the difference.

 

Great exchange for those aspiring federal law enforcement pilots out there.

 

 

Thanks for educating me too. All are fun flying and great careers.

 

edspilot

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