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Police Recruitment Information

Police Recruitment Information

The Renton Police Department is continually seeking qualified men and women from all segments of society to help us continue our tradition of giving the City of Renton the best possible law enforcement service. For questions about the recruitment process, contact Brian Sandler, Civil Service Chief Examiner, (425) 430-7650.

Lateral Applicants - The City offers lateral candidates a $10,000 signing bonus, a 40 hour sick leave bank and a 40 hour personal leave bank.


Lateral applicants must have been employed on a full-time basis as a general authority, paid commissioned officer for a minimum of 12 of the last 36 months at the time of application. Applicants must also have successfully completed a basic police training academy and if they are from outside of the State of Washington, become certified by the Washington State Equivalency Academy within one year of employment.  Equivalency Academy Information

Candidates that qualify as a Lateral Police Officer must pass an oral board interview.

To apply for a Lateral/Experienced position, or obtain salary and benefit information, please click on the (Police Officer (Experienced/Lateral) position on the Job Opportunities page.

Entry Level Police Officer


  • Entry level applicants must meet the following criteria:
  • Age 21 at the time of examination
  • United States citizen; read and speak the English language
  • High school graduate or equivalent, college course work preferred
  • Ability to obtain a Washington State Driver's License free of suspensions or revocations
  • No felony convictions
  • Ability to pass a series of qualifying pre-employment examinations

The entry level police officer testing process includes a written examination, physical ability test battery, and an oral board interview.

To apply for an Entry Level position, please contact - Public Safety Testing. To obtain more information including salary and benefit information, click on the Police Officer-Entry Level link on the Job Opportunities page.

Both lateral and entry level candidates who successfully complete their respective process will be placed on the eligibility register according to their composite score, plus veterans' preference points, if applicable. Each testing phase, for both positions, has standardized criteria that must successfully be met by a candidate to qualify the applicant to continue in the hiring process, which may include the following components:

  • Polygraph examination
  • Psychological evaluation
  • Extensive background investigation
  • Medical examination/drug screening

An applicant's failure to meet the criteria in any phase constitutes grounds for disqualification.

The Department

The Renton Police Department is a full service law enforcement agency, organized in seven divisions; Patrol Operations, Patrol Services, Investigations, Administrative Services, Auxiliary/Staff Services, Professional Standards and Special Operations. The Renton Police Department is proud to be recognized as a fully accredited agency by the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs. The City of Renton is Washington State’s 8th largest city. For more information about the City of Renton visit City of Renton Information.

We take great pride in the quality of our personnel and the services they provide, which include:

  • Bicycle Patrol
  • K-9
  • Detectives
  • School Resource Officers
  • Volunteer Program
  • Vacation House Checks
  • Traffic
  • Special Enforcement Team
  • Direct Enforcement Team
  • SWAT
  • Hostage Negotiators
  • Valley Narcotics Enforcement Team (V.N.E.T.)
  •  Neighborhood & Business Watch

The Role of a Police Officer

The nature of police work involves the protection of life and property, enforcement of laws and ordinances, the prevention and investigation of crimes, and the ability to exercise independent discretion. A police officer must possess intelligence and integrity and stand up to rigorous personal, ethical, moral and physical challenges. While providing service to the community, the greatest rewards of the profession are self-esteem, pride and the opportunity to utilize individual talents and skills.

Academy and FTO Training

A new police officer's career begins at the academy where training is provided for 18 weeks (720 hours), 8 hours every day, except weekends and holidays. Commissioned academy graduates are assigned to the Patrol Division under the guidance of a Field Training Officer who instructs and guides new officers in the practical application of academy training.

Lateral police officers are assigned directly to the Patrol Division with a Field Training Officer to provide orientation and training. Performance is evaluated during the first year on a regular basis.

All Entry-Level officers serve an 18-month period of probation where job performance is formally evaluated by a supervisor.