The Wauchula Police Department is an Accredited Law Enforcement Agency through the Commission for Florida Accreditation (CFA). Wauchula Police Department was the first accredited agency in Hardee County, and the First in the State of Florida by its size to become accredited. By being an accredited Law Enforcement Agency we insure that our employees and officers are held to a higher standard of professionalism.
We are the second largest Law Enforcement Agency in Hardee County and progressively growing.
The department is currently made up of 16 full time officers, 7 part time officers, and 8 non-sworn support staff positions along with citizen volunteers. Wauchula Police Department is made up of the following departments:
Administration ,Accreditation, Patrol, Investigations, Animal Control, Victims Advocacy, School Crossing
The City of Wauchula offers its Full Time Officers and Employees the following Benefits:
Health Insurance is free to all full time employees. Family coverage, Dental, and Vision can be added at employees expense.
Supplemental Insurances such as Life, Cancer, and Accidental are also available.
Life Insurance is carried on the employee at no charge to the employee with the employee’s choice of beneficiary.
Employees accrue Vacation time based on the number of years service. After your first 6 months of full time employment you can claim vacation time. Employees between 6 months and 1 year as a full time employees are entitled to 1 week - 40 hours. Employees between one and five years of employment gain 2 weeks -80 hours per year. Employees between five years and ten years gain 3 weeks - 120 hours per year. Employees between 10 years and 15 years gain 4 weeks - 160 hours per year. Employees over 15 years of employment gain 5 weeks - 200 hours per year.
Accrued Sick Time / Sick Bank:
Employees can begin to use accrued sick time after completion of their six-month probation. Sick time is accrued at 10 hours per month.
Employees can also sign up for the employee sick bank. This bank allows you to pull from donated hours of other employee’s who are enrolled, should you go over your accrued sick time.
The Wauchula Police Department has two individual retirement systems established for its full time sworn employees.
Full time Sworn Officers are vested after 6 years of continuous service.
The City of Wauchula provides a pension under the Florida Municipal Pension Trust Fund. 10% of the employee’s earning are drawn from the employees payroll. The City of Wauchula pays 11.5% towards the employee’s retirement.
Should an employee leave prior to completing 6 years the employee will be given the total amount after taxes that they have contributed towards the City Pension
The Police Department also has a private Police Pension included. Sworn full time employees are eligible for the Officers Private Pension at no cost to the officer.
In the Private Police Pension should an officer leave prior to 10 years of service; all accrued funds under that officer’s name are divided equally between the officers still active in this pension plan.
The City of Wauchula offers to all its employee’s enrollment in to a 401 K plan. Payroll deduction is required.
The City of Wauchula gives 12 hour paid holiday to it employees. These holidays are as follows:
New Years Day
4th of July / Independence Day
Day After Thanksgiving
Personal Day of Employee Choice
Should a Full time officer be working the day of the holiday the officer will be paid double time and a half for 12 hours.
Should an employee choose to advance there education the employee can request tuition reimbursement.
This process must be approved by the employee’s supervisor and show that it will benefit the City.
The City will reimburse the employee upon completion of the class as follows:
Passing Grade of an A – 100% Reimbursement
Passing Grade of a B - 90% Reimbursement
Passing Grade of a C – 80 % Reimbursement
Employee makes a D or lower no Reimbursement is given.
Employees have the availability to sign up for a pay roll deducted prepaid legal service. This service will assist the enrolled employee with any legal proceedings or procedure the employee may encounter that would require an attorney’ assistance.
Achieved one (1) successful Annual Performance review.
Patrol Officer II – 27,996
Achieved one year as a Patrol Officer with the Department
Attended and completed three advanced 40 hour classes.
Patrol Officer I – 30,450
Has achieved Patrol Officer III and II status:
Has attended and completed an additional 100 hours of advanced training.
Candidates who have previous experience or higher education may be accelerated.
The Wauchula Police Department is tasked with providing Law Enforcement services to the residents with in the city limits of Wauchula. These services include but are not limited to emergency and non-emergency calls for service, traffic enforcement, crash investigations, selective enforcement, Criminal Investigation, community oriented policing services, or ability to perform required task as indicated in the Wauchula Police Department job description.
The State of Florida requires all Law Enforcement Officers to meet a standardized level of education and training as set forth in Florida Statue 943.
All Law Enforcement candidates must complete a comprehensive Law Enforcement Academy certified by the State of Florida.
The State of Florida has also established the minimum qualifications to be a Law Enforcement Officer:
Completed an approved CJSTC (Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission) Basic Law Enforcement Academy.
Be at least 19 years of age or older;
Graduated from Standard High School, Vocational School or acceptable GED equivalency;
A citizen of the United States
Must possess a valid Drivers License at the time of application and a valid Florida Drivers License at time of employment
Must possess s certified copy of a Birth Certificate
Must possess a Social Security Card
Must provide a copy of a Florida State Exam Scores.
Copy of Military discharge, DD214 (if applicable).
A copy of your Selective Service Card, if between the ages of 18 & 25.
Pass prescribed physical examination
Applicant’s vision must meet Florida Drivers License requirements.
Be of good moral character
Undergo a criminal records check with included fingerprinting;
Successfully pass a background investigation.
Successfully pass a:
Oral review board
Probationary period of six months
For additional information on obtaining a Florida Law Enforcement certification, please visit the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s website at: www.fdle.state.fl.us
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It is the policy of the Wauchula Police Department to prohibit bias based profiling in all Police-initiated actions. These include all investigative detentions, field contacts, traffic contacts, arrests, searches, asset seizures and forfeiture efforts. Officer's actions will be based on a standard of reasonable suspicion or probable cause as required by the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and statutory authority. Officers must be able to articulate specific facts, circumstances and conclusions, which support reasonable suspicion for an investigative detention or traffic stop, or probable cause for arrest. Officers shall not consider race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, age, gender identity or sexual orientation in establishing either reasonable suspicion, probable cause, or as a basis for requesting consent to search. Criminal profiling is a legitimate tool in the fight against crime. It is an investigative method in which an Officer, through observation of activities and environment, identifies suspicious behavior by individuals and develops a legal basis, consistent with the Fourth Amendment, to detain and question.
However, illegal profiling refers to a decision by an Officer to stop, detain, interdict, or search an individual based on the race, color, gender, ethnicity, religion, age, sexual orientation, or national origin. The Department prohibits illegal profiling as a law enforcement tactic and will not tolerate or condone its use by any Member.
Reference: Wauchula Police Department General Order 2-24