Career Paths TPD - Home | Departments

After completing the 26-week academy which is held in Topeka, new officers begin their careers in the Field Operations Division as patrol officers. After an 18-month probationary period an officer can bid the shift they wish to work based on seniority. After receiving street experience, officers can also develop specialized skills in many areas. Some of these areas include:

  • Academy Instructor
  • Accident Reconstruction
  • Response Team
  • Bicycle Unit
  • Community Officer
  • Crisis Negotiator
  • School Resource Officer
  • K-9 Officer
  • Motorcycle Unit
  • Criminal Investigations
  • Violent Crime Unit
  • Narcotics Unit
  • Crime Scene Investigation


Promotions are available to officers after five years of service. A written examination and an oral interview are required before being placed on a promotional list. The Corporal rank is a patrol position on a patrol shift. A Detectives rank job assignments include but are not limited to the following:

  • Auto Theft
  • Burglary/Theft
  • Criminal Intelligence
  • Financial Crimes
  • Homicide/Robbery
  • Special Victims
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