Lateral Police Officer / Police Officer Recruit

Sparks Police Department - Sparks, Nevada

Oct 22, 2020

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Application Deadline:
Dec 31, 2025

Salary Information

Entry Level:
$$26.62/Recruit or 27.95/Lateral hourly
Lateral Transfer:
$up to 15% above entry pay based on experience annual
Top Pay:
$$36.39 hourly

Job Description

Are you looking for a meaningful career that has a positive impact on the community? If you answered yes, come join the Sparks Police Department! We proudly display “Where Community Comes First” on the police vehicles, a motto developed by our front lines. While carrying out the vision to implement innovative strategies to prevent crime, promote excellence in leadership and serve the community, you will also receive a generous and competitive salary, benefit package, tuition reimbursement, bilingual pay (when applicable) and retirement plan. People who come to Sparks stay in Sparks. It’s more than a job – it’s a career that offers special assignments, continuing education and promotional opportunities. Apply here to start the process.

This is a CONTINUOUS RECRUITMENT, meaning that applications are accepted year round. You may put in one application in a 365 day period.

The City of Sparks is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Candidates hired as Police Officer Recruit are sent as a paid employee to a regional Nevada Police Academy. Upon successful completion, Police Office Recruits are sworn in as Police Officers.

*POLICE OFFICER LATERAL TESTING DATES FALL 2020: Saturday, October 17, 2020 WINTER 2021: Saturday, January 16, 2021 SPRING 2021: Saturday, March 13, 2021 SUMMER 2021: June 12, 2021

*POLICE OFFICER RECRUIT TEST DATES: SUMMER 2020: August 15, 2020 FALL 2020: October 17, 2020 WINTER 2021: January 16, 2021 SPRING 2021: March 13, 2021 For all test dates, applications must be received by Noon (PST) on the Monday before the test date to be considered for that test.

Candidates who meet minimum qualifications will receive an e-mail invitation to schedule their test. The test day includes a physical abilities and a written test. Plan to spend 4-8 hours testing.

Not sure if you have what it takes? There are resources for you!

  1. Prepare for the Physical Abilities Exam by understanding exactly what is on the test. NV POST offers physical fitness programs developed for candidates to assess and improve fitness levels in preparation for the test and academy :
  2. Prepare for the Written Exam: Purchase a low cost study guide or sample test here: hpps:// OR contact your local community college or library for test preparation assistance and aides.
  3. Oral Board Exam: We want to get to know you and why you are looking for this opportunity. Practice and prepare to answer interview style questions about yourself.

DESCRIPTION OF THE POSITION Learn to perform a variety of peace officer duties involving the protection of life and property, enforcement of laws and ordinances, criminal investigation, crime prevention and suppression, case preparation and testimony; provide information and assistance to the public; this is the first working level class in law enforcement expected to perform all duties required to effectively respond to and resolve the normal scope of peace officer situations

Additional Information

Applicants must possess the following minimum qualifications to continue in the recruitment process:

Marijuana is illegal at the federal level. The City of Sparks receives federal grants. Must not have used marijuana in the last 18 months.

Nevada Law requires the following for a candidate to be a Police Officer:

  • Must be 21 years old at the time of appointment
  • Must be a U.S. Citizen
  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • Must not have been convicted of a felony in Nevada or convicted of any offense which would be a felony if committed in Nevada
  • Other requirements as outlined in regulation and law. See NAC 289.110 and NRS 289.510 for more information about state requirements.

Candidates must meet all federal, state and local requirements for the position of Police Officer.

Education and Experience: High School Diploma or equivalent

and at least one of the following four options:

Option One: Equivalent to twenty-four semester units of college level coursework


Option Two: Equivalent to ++36 months of full time employment in the last 7 years++ in one of the following types of employment:

  • Criminal justice, law enforcement, law or related work
  • Public safety
  • Direct and regular public/community contact involving dispute resolution
  • Security
  • Work with community initiatives
  • Work with children/adults with special needs, or closely related work
  • Helpful Tip - Make sure your application describes your job duties in detail so that the recruiter can determine if your work history meets these minimum qualifications


Option Three: U.S. Armed Forces, National Guard/Air Guard and U.S. Coast Guard service may be accepted in lieu of the 24-semester units; please attach a copy of your DD-214, Member 4 (Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty) to the application.

If you have not yet received the DD-214 provide written verification from your commanding officer citing current active duty status, years of service, pay grade/rank, military occupational specialty/rating, expected date of discharge/retirement including dates of terminal leave and anticipated condition of discharge.

Prior to an offer of employment, Human Resources will require a certified copy of the DD-214.

Reserve and National Guard personnel should provide written verification from candidate's commanding officer citing current Reserve/Guard status, years of service, pay grade/rank, military occupational specialty/rating and expected continuation of Reserve/Guard duty (list beginning/ending dates of current enlistment/obligated service).

Character of military service is considered on a case-by-case basis.


Option Four: Possession of the equivalent to a P.O.S.T. Category 1 Certificate;

  • Helpful tip - if you are a lateral candidate, please apply for the Police Officer posting. How do you know which to apply for?
    • Apply for Police Officer Recruit if you need to attend a NV Police Academy to be eligible to work as a Police Officer in Nevada
    • Apply for the Police Officer (lateral) posting if you have a NV POST Category I Certificate, and you are still eliglble to work as a Police Officer in Nevada OR if you have an out-of-state POST Category I Certificate or equivalent and meet the standards for reciprocity in Nevada to work as a Police Officer without requiring NV Police Academy. Here is a link to the NV POST website outlining Reciprocity requirements:

Licenses and Certificates: Must possess and maintain the equivalent to a valid Nevada Class C driver's license at the time of civil service testing and at time of hire.

Must obtain basic Nevada P.O.S.T. Category I certification and firearms qualification within six months of hire.

Civil Service Testing: This is a continuous recruitment. Qualified applicants will be invited to a Civil Service Written Examination and a Physical Abilities Examination. The testing is limited to the first one-hundred (100) qualified applicants to sign up for the testing period. The top sixty (60) candidates from each test period who pass these two exams will be invited to a third Civil Service test, the Oral Board Examination. Candidates may apply once in a 365 day period to test.

Job Requirements

  • Age: Must be 21 at the time of appointment
  • Education: Please See Qualifications Above
  • Experience: Please See Qualifications Above

Contact Information

Support Services

Sparks Police Department
1701 E Prater Way
Sparks, Nevada 89434-8934
phone: 775.353.2299

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