City of Fort Smith Police Department
Excellence In All Things
Police Officer Careers at Fort Smith PD
Are you interested in coming to an agency where your work is noticed and you’re not just a number? Do you want to make an impact every day, not just run from call to call to call? Do you want to know the people who live in this community and make an impact in their lives? If so—this is the place for you.
About the Fort Smith Police Department
The Fort Smith Police Department is a progressive 21st Century law enforcement agency made up of 164 sworn officers and 54 non-sworn professional staff members. The department is organized into three Bureaus; the Administration Bureau, the Uniformed Bureau, and the Non-Uniformed Bureau. Newly hired officers will begin their career in the Patrol Field Operations Division of the Uniformed Bureau. Officers are assigned to one of three troops (mornings, afternoon, nights) working non-rotating 10-hour shifts (4 on, 3 off). Officers on each troop are single person units assigned to one of 12 patrol areas with a typical daily call load of 36-45 calls for police service per troop. The department maintains a solid relationship with the community and officers are expected to maintain that relationship through community service opportunities and community-oriented policing.
The department offers multiple opportunities for mobility to specialized units or to receive specialized training, such as: Motorcycle unit, collision reconstruction, drug recognition expert, Crisis Intervention Unit, SWAT team, Hostage Negotiator team, Airport officer, School Resource Officer, Information desk officer, Crisis Intervention Officer, Community Relations Unit, Persons Crime Detective, Property Crimes Detective, Juvenile Crimes/Special Investigation Detective, Narcotics Detective, Crime Intelligence Unit, K9 officer, Computer Forensics Investigator, Recruiting team, Training Unit, Crime Scene Investigation, Fingerprint analysis, and much more.

Regionally Competitive Salary

Entry salary for new police officers is $19.41 per hour or $40,372.80 annually.

Higher salary for experienced officers

Currently certified, full-time police officers may earn up to $26.11/hr ($54,308.80 annually) based on experience, at the discretion of the Chief of Police, HR Director, and City Administrator

Education Incentives

Up to 7% of base salary for college degrees. Tuition reimbursement program available for continuing education.

Paid Sick Leave

After one year of service, 160 hours sick leave per year up to 960 hours

Paid Vacation

Three weeks of paid vacation after 90 days. Vacation leave during first year is for emergencies only.

Benefits Package

Health, dental, vision, and life insurance package. Also longevity pay and 13 paid holidays.

Retirement Plan

Officer pension plan through the Arkansas Local Police & Fire Retirement System (LOPFI)

Minimum Requirements for Employment

Per Arkansas Law, applicants must be 21 years of age and possess a High School Diploma or GED Certificate along with a valid driver's license. Applicants must be free of felony convictions. Applicants must also be free of misdemeanor convictions of theft, violence, or drug offenses.
Learn More
  • Application Process-Step One
    Applicants begin by selecting announced job opening in box at top of page. From there an application must be completed per the instructions, including the City application. Applicants download oath of applicant to complete and attach to application along with copies of the applicant's birth certificate, driver's license, social security card, high school diploma/GED, and DD214 (if applicable).
  • Step Two: Written Exam & Physical Agility Exam
    Applicants are scheduled to complete a written civil service exam (study materials available for purchase) and a physical agility exam. Applicants must pass both to proceed in the process. Video illustrating physical agility exam can be found below. Applicants must pass minimum scoring on both to proceed to next step. Currently certified officers may be exempt from physical agility exam.
  • Step Three: Background Investigation
    Applicants will be given a personal history statement to complete. Applicant will be assigned a background investigator who will perform a criminal background check, driving record check, personal reference interview, and other checks of the applicant's character. Applicants must pass this step to continue to the next.
  • Step Four: Police Review Board
    Applicants are scheduled to attend an interview in front of a five-member police review board. Applicant will be asked to complete a small task and answer multiple questions from the board. The applicant will be scored according to written exam score and interview score. All applicants passing this step will be placed on a list, ranked according to their overall score.
  • Step Five: Conditional Employment
    Applicants will be selected from list by Chief of Police for conditional offers of employment. Once conditional offers have been received, the applicant must complete a polygraph examination, a medical physical, drug screen, and a psychological assessment. Each applicant must pass each before moving to next step.
  • Step Six: Hire and Academy Training
    Applicants will be given a hire date to begin employment. An orientation will be given in which the newly hired officer will be sworn in, submit employment documentation, complete departmental policy requirements, firearm qualification, and equipment issue. All duty equipment will be issued by the department.
About the City of Fort Smith
The City of Fort Smith has a population of just under 90,000 residents, expanding to over 150,000 during the work day. Steeped in Old West lore--from books and films like True Grit to famous and infamous real-life characters like Belle Starr, Judge Isaac C. Parker, US Deputy Marshall Bass Reeves, and the founder of the US Army Rangers, General William O. Darby--Fort Smith honors its colorful past while embracing development opportunities that will both preserve the uniqueness of the community and ensure its future growth. The city offers a variety of unique cultural and recreational attractions for residents and visitors that include a new bike skate park. The City has completed a $10.9 million aquatics center, accomplished jointly with Sebastian County. From parks to walking trails to on and off-road biking and the Janet Huckabee Arkansas River Valley Nature Center, the City offers outdoor activities for all ages. There are also plenty of hiking and fishing opportunities around places like Lake Fort Smith Park.

Median Age

The median age of Fort Smith citizens is 35 years old.

Median Income

The median income for the City of Fort Smith is $36,777

Cost of Living

The cost of living index for Fort Smith is 76, compare to the national average of 100.

Average Home Price

The average cost of a home in Fort Smith is $110,300