Besides classroom training, all police officers, from patrol officers and detectives to federal agents, undergo academy training. These courses last from 12 to 17 weeks, and their goal is to ensure every law enforcement officers is in the best condition to do their job.
Uniformed Police Officer Training
Police academy training is different depending on jurisdiction, but all academies include strength and agility training, where officers need to bench press a certain percentage of their weight and complete strength and stamina tests. Firearms training is also an important part of police training, with recruits practicing with handguns, shotguns and other weapons to develop high accuracy shooting skills. Officers also learn to use a patrol car as a pursuit tool, including controlled skidding tactics, two-way radio work and crash avoidance techniques.
Federal Agent Training
Government agents have a much more challenging training program. The FBI, for example, has a 17-week training program at the FBI Academy based in Quantico, VA. New recruits must pass a training program that consists of classroom learning, physical fitness and integrated scenarios, including the s a simulated case that leads to several fake arrests.
Part of FBI training is held at the mock city training grounds of Hogan’s Alley, where situations are enacted in a realistic city setting. The firearms training is more involved as well, with agents learning to use submachine guns as well as handguns and shotguns.
These training academies are designed to prepare new law enforcement officers for the dynamic and challenging situations they will face in their line of work, as well as to provide them with the physical and social skills they will need to be successful. It takes a disciplined mind and an able body to stand up to the demands of law enforcement training, which is why U.S. law enforcement agents are considered the finest.