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Chicago Police Department


Chicago Police Department

The Chicago Police Department is the main law enforcement agency of Chicago Illinois in the United States. It is currently under the jurisdiction of the Mayor of Chicago, Rahm Immanuel. It is the second largest law enforcement agency in the United States right behind the New York City Police Department.


There are about 12, 244 sworn officers and over 1,925 other employees and the Chicago Police Department is one of the oldest modern police forces in the world. The department is lead by the Superintendent of Police, Gary McCarthy who is the former director of the Newark, New Jersey Police Department. He is assisted by the first deputy superintendent, Alfonso Wysinger. The superintendent manages six bureaus which are each connected by a bureau chief. As of last February, these bureaus include:


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• The Bureau of Patrol or BOP for short whose chief is Joseph Patterson
• The Bureau of Detectives where Thomas Byrne is the chief
• The Bureau of Organized Crime or BOC which is under the guidance of Bureau Chief Nicholas Roti
• The Bureau of Internal Affairs also referred to as BIA that is headed by Bureau Chief Juan Rivera
• The Bureau of Administration or BOA whose Bureau Chief is Eugene Williams and finally,
• The Bureau of Organizational Development which is headed by Bureau Chied Debra Kirb.


As part of the community and based on how the community empowers the Chicago Police Department, it is committed to protecting the lives, property and rights of all people. They were created to maintain order and to enforce the law impartially. The Chicago Police aim to provide quality police service in partnership with other members of the community. To realize this mission, the department aims to attain the highest degree of ethical behavior and professional conduct at all times.


Using the letters of the word ‘Police’, members of the Chicago Police Department are determined to be professional, serve as obligated, be leaders, be committed to upholding the highest standards of honest and ethical conduct as well as uphold and follow the law in the face of fear, danger and temptation.
On January 31, 1835, the state of Illinois authorized the establishment of the Chicago Police Force. Six months later, Orsemus Morrison was elected as Chicago’s first constable assisted by Constables Luther Nichols and John Shringley.


In 1855, the Chicago Police Department underwent a major reorganization strategy under the direction of Captain Cyrus Bradley. In this strategy, the force was increased by six times the number of officers.
But six years later, when the Illinois State Legislature took away Mayor John Wentworth’s police authority, the mayor fired the entire police force. Chicago was without police protection for 12 hours until the Board of Police Commissioners swears back in the discharged officers.


Throughout the years, there were numerous changes in the Chicago Police Department including things such as the appointment of the first African American Chicago Police Officer, the appointment of the first female officer, the Chicago fire which destroyed 3 and a ½ square miles and even the establishment of the Traffic Division.
Chicago Police Officers protect people and property in the city of Chicago. They do this by enforcing laws, including traffic codes, and helping in emergencies. They may specialize in different areas of law enforcement, such as detective work, bomb squad, mounted unit, or marine unit.


The starting salary for Chicago Police officers starts at $61,530 after one year and an additional increase to $65,016 after 18 months. Promotions to specialized or command positions also increase an officer’s base pay. Salaries were supplemented with $2,920 annual duty availability and an $1,800 annual uniform allowance.

In order to become a Chicago Police Officer however, and benefit from the salary and other advantages, there are certain requirements that an applicant needs to fulfill.

The first thing to do will be to earn either an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice. There are also others requirements like the physical fitness tests. In order to qualify, applicants must have at least 60 semester hours of college credit, four years of continuous active duty in the United States Military or one year of continuous active duty in the US Armed Forces combined with 30 semester hours of college credit.


The first step is a written test. Information about the test and the procedure for completing it are given during the application period. After meeting the minimum qualifications and passing the test, applicants will be placed on a pre-qualified applicant list based on a lottery. Those will be called for further processing as positions become available.

Newly hired recruits who pass the Chicago Police Exam, called Probationary Police Officers (PPOs), attend the Training Academy. There they will take courses such as Criminal Law, Firearms Training, Emergency Vehicle Operation Training, Traffic Law, Report Writing, Crime Investigation, and Defensive Tactics. Upon completion of the police academy courses, the PPOs will take the State of Illinois Certificate Examination before moving on to the field evaluation portion of their training

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