City job opportunities – Police Department

The Asheville Police Department is an equal opportunity employer that does not discriminate in employment or the provision of services based on race, color, creed, religion, national origin, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender (including pregnancy), gender identity or expression or familial status.




Employee Benefits and Position Information


All police department employees, sworn and civilian, are offered the following benefits:

  • Retirement program through the NC Local Government Employees’ Retirement System (LGERS). The City of Asheville also provides a 401K plan with employer contributions.
    Sworn officers receive an additional law enforcement retirement supplement through the LGERS system.
  • Tuition reimbursement for qualifying courses of study.
  • Health, dental, and life insurance.
  • Incentive pay for:
    • Education (sworn and civilian positions)
    • Foreign language (sworn and civilian positions)
    • Night-shift (sworn and civilian positions)
    • Senior Police Officer status and Intermediate/Advanced Law Enforcement Certificates (sworn only)

Additional information on employee benefits is available through the City of Asheville Human Resources Department.


Patrol Officer Schedule:

Patrol officers work non-rotating twelve-hour day or night work shifts with every other weekend off. Hours may vary for administrative or specialty assignments.


Specialized Units:

The department has a number of specialty teams and positions for sworn officers, including but not limited to: Downtown (bike) Unit, Hazardous Devices Team (Bomb Squad), Emergency Response Team (SWAT), Crisis Negotiation Team (Hostage Negotiators), Motor (motorcycle) Unit, School Resource Unit, Drug Suppression Unit/drug task forces, and canine officers. Specialized positions typically require 1-3 years of experience as a non-probationary officer for application.


Minimum Qualifications and Automatic Disqualifiers


Complete qualifications and automatic disqualifiers will be listed in the job posting.

To meet the minimum qualifications to be a police officer, applicants must:

  • Be 20 years of age at the time of application
  • Be a citizen of the United States
  • Have a high school diploma or GED
  • Have no felony convictions or serious misdemeanor convictions in the past five years, which includes:
    • Any crime which the punishment could have been more than 2 years
    • A crime or unlawful act defined as a Class B Misdemeanor within the last 10 years
    • 2 or more crimes or unlawful acts defined as Class A Misdemeanor within the last 5 years
    • A DUI or DWI within the last ten years
  • Pass a physical fitness test and the Police Officer Physical Agility Test (POPAT)
  • Meet vision, hearing, and other physical requirements
  • Possess a valid driver’s license, with no suspensions of driving privileges in the past three years
  • Satisfactorily pass a background investigation, polygraph examination, psychological evaluation, and drug screen


Automatic disqualifiers for the position of police officer or police officer trainee include:

  • Illegal selling or distribution of any drug
  • Any use of hard illegal drugs such as methamphetamine, cocaine, LSD or heroin within the past 2 years


Candidates applying for a certified law enforcement position (lateral entry) must meet all requirements for non-certified applicants, possess a valid law enforcement certification from the North Carolina Law Enforcement Training and Standards Commission, and must have been employed as a law enforcement officer in good standing in the State of North Carolina within the last twelve months.


Out-of-state candidates who have been employed as full-time law enforcement officers will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis to determine whether or not they must complete North Carolina Basic Law Enforcement Training (BLET). Out-of-state candidates are encouraged to contact the Recruitment and Career Development Section at for further information.


Application and Hiring Process


The hiring process with the department may take between 90 to 120 days to complete. The following steps are part of the hiring process:

  • Pre-employment testing (police officer trainees/telecommunicators only)
  • Physical fitness testing (police officers only)
  • Panel interview
  • One-on-one interview
  • Health assessment (police officers only)
  • Background investigation, including a polygraph examination
  • Psychological evaluation (police officers only)
  • Drug screen


Physical Fitness Requirements for Police Officer Positions


Pre-employment Physical Fitness Test

Candidates for the position of police officer trainee must pass a physical fitness test consisting of push-ups, sit-ups, a 300-meter sprint, and a 1.5-mile run.



Police Officer Physical Agility Test (POPAT)

Passing the POPAT is a requirement by the State of North Carolina to become a certified law enforcement officer. If cadets in basic law enforcement training do not pass this physical examination they are not eligible to become an officer.



Basic Law Enforcement Training

Candidates selected for the position of Police Officer Trainee must complete basic law enforcement training (BLET) to be certified as a police officer. The department sends police trainees to the Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College (A-B Tech) BLET academy. The academy is 18-20 weeks long and covers 34 blocks of instruction. APD cadets are paid as full-time employees of the City of Asheville while attending the academy. Health insurance benefits begin on the first day of the month following your start date.


Contact Information


For additional information or questions regarding employment opportunities at the Asheville Police Department please contact:

Recruitment & Career Development