BECOMING A CONSTABLE


WHAT IS A CONSTABLE?

State Constables are appointed as sworn peace officers authorized to enforce the Laws of the State as specified by law and their Commissions. They primarily assist and support various law enforcement agencies as an extra police officer, as needed. The South Carolina Law Enforcement Training Council certifies all State Constables as qualified for public service as a law enforcement officer.

State Constables are “appointed officers” by the Governor of South Carolina and regulated by the South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division (SLED.) They serve the public by helping maintain peace as they have for hundreds of years, but with qualifications, training and standards that meet the current requirements of performing law enforcement duties. Volunteer State Constables are Uncompensated per state law.

Assist law enforcement agencies: Opportunities vary and State Constables serve in various situations. Many volunteer to work with law enforcement agencies (e.g. Sheriff’s Departments, Police Departments, University Police Departments, State agencies, SLED, sporting events) for routine patrol and special events (e.g. festivals, fairs, school events, parades, etc.) court security and prisoner transport. Constables may also take certain law enforcement actions while not working with an agency if encountering an imminent and urgent situation with a threat to public safety or a need to preserve life.

A constable candidate must be a US Citizen and submit an application to SLED (background search performed) for approval. If approved, the candidate must successfully complete a Basic State Constable training program. The Basic Training program is regulated by SLED and established by the SC Law Enforcement Training Council. SLED approved uniforms and equipment must be purchased at the Constable’s expense. The training includes Firearms, state laws, self-defense and other training as well as passing a test administered by a Criminal Justice Academy Certified Law Enforcement Instructor. There are three Groups: Group 2 which are officers who retired from a recognized agency Group 3 which are regular constables and are require to volunteer 120 hours annually and complete annual and Advanced who receive additional training and are required to volunteer for 240 hours annually. All State Constables are required to complete required training and firearms qualification recertification annually to maintain their commission.

Constables also assist with statewide events and festivals. Each Constable may volunteer based on their individual schedule; there is much flexibility in meeting the required 120 or 240 work hours annually.

Camaraderie with fellow constables and law enforcement along with advanced training opportunities are available to Constables through SLED, SCLEOA and the SC State Constables’ Association.

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