Background Investigation

Law Enforcement Agency personnel are held to a higher standard than the average citizen and their behavior, both on and off the job, should be a positive reflection of the Department. Therefore, every Law Enforcement Agency candidate will be subject to a thorough background investigation to verify good moral character and identify past behaviors that may indicate the candidate’s suitability to perform the duties of a Law Enforcement Agency position. Although certain conduct or omissions may disqualify a candidate, it should be noted that each candidate’s background will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. This review weighs all aspects of the individual’s background to determine if the candidate possesses the characteristics and qualities desired by the Los Angeles County Probation Department.

Our agency believes the ideal candidate should possess the characteristics we identify in our CORE values. These characteristics include the following:

  • Dignity & Respect – for our clients, the public and employees;
  • Integrity – to do the right thing for the right reason, all the time;
  • Leadership – to develop an organization that is sustainable and will attain national prominence;
  • Rehabilitation – is founded in a belief that people have the ability to transform into law-abiding individuals;
  • Contribution – of everyone is valued and everyone has the opportunity to perform to their highest potential;
  • Commitment – to providing service excellence to achieve positive outcomes for healthy families and communities;
  • Collaboration – by working with others to maximize efforts and achieve positive results;
  • Evidence-based Practices and Policies – as a way of assuring that our best efforts are leading to desired outcomes.

SWORN PERSONAL HISTORY STATEMENT (PHS)

The following link is for applicants applying for Peace Officer positions, including: Group Supervisor, Nights (GSN); Detention Services Officer (DSO); or Deputy Probation Officer (DPO).

Sworn Application

NON-SWORN PERSONAL HISTORY STATEMENT (PHS)

The following link is for applicants applying for all Civilian positions.

Non-Sworn Application

Background Investigation FAQ

I am on the lists for GSN and DSO. How do I know when I can meet with a background investigator?

Once you are deemed reachable on the certification list, you will receive a Conditional Offer of Employment Letter for a Peace Officer position. This letter will provide instructions on how to download the Background Investigation packet, which will be used for your background investigation. Once you receive this letter, you will be scheduled for an interview with a background investigator.

May I apply for more then one position at the same time?

Yes, you may apply for more than one position at the same time, if you meet the selection requirements for each of the positions.

What are the basic requirements to become a Peace Officer with the Probation Department?

To apply for a Peace Officer position with the Probation Department, the following is required: Be at least 21 years of age by the time of appointment; have no felony conviction or currently on probation; be a U.S. citizen or eligible resident alien awaiting a citizenship application decision; meet all educational requirements for the position applied for; possess a valid Class “C” driver’s license (Out of State applicants can use a valid license from their home state when filing, but will need a valid California Class C license at the time of hire); and the ability to perform arduous physical duties, which includes but not limited to, being able to lift 25 pounds often combined with bending, twisting or working on irregular surfaces and may require extraordinary physical activity.

What will be evaluated in the background investigation process?

The following factors will be evaluated in the background investigation process: Employment History, Conduct, Driving Record, Criminal Record, Narcotic Use, Legal Issues, Military Experience, Financial History and Residence History.

How long does the background process take?

Typically, the background process will take from 90 to 150 days to complete. As you successfully complete each phase of the background investigation, you will be scheduled for the next phase in the process. The background investigation starts with your interview with a background investigator, you will undergo a polygraph examination, a medical examination and a psychological evaluation.

What is the primary reason candidates are being disqualified from the background process?

The primary reason candidates are disqualified from the background process is falsification. Please ensure to answer all questions truthfully because Integrity is one of the characteristics of the CORE values set by the Probation Department.

Will I need to take a polygraph exam?

Yes, it is required during your background investigation.

Will I be disqualified for having tattoos?

Tattoos are not necessarily a disqualifying factor. However, it depends on the nature of the tattoo(s). All tattoos will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Candidates with tattoos who are subsequently hired must ensure that the tattoos are not visible to the public while on-duty.

Do I have to attend any academy training?

Yes, you will be required to attend a paid nine (9) week Juvenile Correctional Officer Core (JCOC) training academy that is held at the Probation Department’s Training Center in Pico Rivera, CA.

Will I be disqualified for using marijuana or narcotics?

Although the state of California recognizes the recreational use of marijuana, the Probation Department abides by all Federal drug laws. Your history of any marijuana and/or narcotics use will be evaluated.

I have a couple of speeding tickets in my driving record. Will I be disqualified for having too many tickets?

You will be required to submit a copy of your permanent driving record (H6) from the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). Your driving record will be evaluated for traffic citations, motor vehicle accidents, Failure to Appear/Failure to Pay traffic warrants, and any convictions for Driving Under the Influence.

What can I do if I receive a letter stating that I am disqualified from the background process?

If you receive a disqualification letter, you can file an appeal with the Los Angeles County Department of Human Resources for an independent review. Use the following link to file your appeal: https://eappeals.lacounty.gov/dashboard/. Please note, your appeal must be received by the Appeals Program within ten (10) business days from the postmarked date on the envelope in which the notice of disqualification was mailed, or from the date an electronic notification was sent.

If I am disqualified from the background investigation process, when can I reapply?

If you are disqualified from the background process, you must wait one year from the date of your disqualification letter to participate in the background investigation process again.