A vice police officer is responsible for investigating crimes such as prostitution, pornography, black marketeering, drug distribution, and so on. It's critical to have a good educational background, with a degree in criminal justice being the best path to employment.
While the job of a vice officer is considered by outsiders to be very exciting and is often portrayed as a thrill-a-minute career, in reality it is a tough and dangerous job, with high stress levels and burnout rates.
Some information on how to become a vice police officer is discussed here.
- The job involves patrolling areas where vice crimes flourish, usually in teams by vehicle or on foot;
- Working undercover to investigate and crack gangs and other groups engaged in criminal activity;
- Fill in reports to document day-to-day work carried out, prepare case reports and file documentation on evidence collected;
- Ensure that property (money, drugs, weapons, etc) recovered in the course of solving crimes are secured following a strict chain-of-evidence for future legal proceedings;
- Jobs can be at local, state or federal levels.
Education, training and skills
Minimum educational qualifications to become a police officer must be fulfilled and most vice police officers work their way up the ranks from patrolling jobs to detective roles in different departments and achieving outstanding performance appraisals, before they can move into the vice squad.
The basic educational requirement is a degree in criminal justice, followed by sending in applications to join law enforcement agencies or offices. The process thereafter is as follows:
- Clear criminal background checks and clear a polygraph, physical fitness tests, alcohol&drug screening, complete any qualifying entrance exams which are prescribed and attend a personal interview;
- Once your application to join the police force has been accepted, you will need to head to the nearest police academy or training facility as required;
- Once the training stint is complete, there is one year of internship required, known as the ‘follow-up year’;
- Begin entry-level work on the police force and complete the mandated departmental rotation.
- You will then be assigned to a specific department, if you’re lucky it could be the vice department right away, but in a majority of cases you will work in patrol as a uniformed officer.
- At every stage of promotion, police officers are required to pass the prescribed civil service examination as they work in patrol, investigation, burglary, homicide, property &records and other police departments.
- You can put in an application for transfer to the vice department, which can be a lateral move or transfer with promotion, once you’ve garnered enough experience as a police officer in a variety of cases and situations and have demonstrated exceptional performance throughout such time.
Perseverance, patience, the ability to blend with the surroundings and an aggressive and confident attitudes are necessary attributes for a vice police officer. Continuing education credits are encouraged by most police departments; even if you want to keep working full-time, it's not difficult to advance your education through online schools.