Home Tag "reserve officers"

Developing a Modernized Reserve Unit: Infrastructural Considerations

By Christopher L. McFarlin, J.D., Criminal Justice

Across the country, police departments continuously rely on units of reserve officers for a multitude of assignments. However, historically, there has always been a divide between full-time officers and reserve officers. This is, in large part, due to the fact that full-time police officers don’t see reserve officers as their equals. AMU criminal justice professor Christopher McFarlin writes about how agencies who intend to continue or increase their use of reserve officers must adapt a command and management structures, determine requirements of relevant state laws, and focus their attention on integrating reserve officers into the wider department.

Why Do Agencies Have Reserve Officers?

In the United States, there are more than 15,000 law enforcement agencies with less than 100 sworn personnel. In order to balance community needs with fiscal constraints, many departments have turned to reserve or part-time officers to complement full-time sworn personnel. However, when something like the incident in Tulsa, Oklahoma happens—a reserve deputy sheriff fatally shot an unarmed man—it is important to consider who these reserve officers are.