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Series established March 13, 1975
This series specification describes the Hospital Police Officer, Hospital Police Sergeant, and Hospital Police Lieutenant classes that have major responsibilities for enforcing State laws and hospital regulations on and about State hospital grounds.
Hospital Police Officers, Hospital Police Sergeants, and Hospital Police Lieutenants are distinguished from other peace officer classes by being regularly required to perform law enforcement duties in close proximity to mentally ill patients. Their duties include maintaining law and order on hospital grounds; patrolling and protecting hospital buildings and grounds; checking for unauthorized movement of patients, breaches of security, and unsafe conditions; conducting administrative and criminal investigations; making arrests; testifying in court; and enforcing vehicle traffic and parking regulations and issuing citations when necessary. Incumbents also monitor patient and visitor activities on hospital grounds; assist nursing personnel in controlling severely combative patients; and carry out standard search procedures in cases of unauthorized patient absences. Incumbents transport patients under security as required and perform other related duties.
This is the entry and journeyperson level for this series. Incumbents, under supervision, perform custody, security, and general law enforcement duties and do other related work.
Under general supervision, the Hospital Police Sergeant plans, organizes, and directs the work and training of subordinate police officers and does other related work. The Hospital Police Sergeant supervises Hospital Police Officers assigned to a shift or unit and may perform administrative duties as directed.
Under direction, the Hospital Police Lieutenant plans, organizes, and directs law enforcement and security operations of a State hospital and does other related work. The Hospital Police Lieutenant supervises Hospital Police Sergeants assigned to a division or similarly structured group and performs administrative or staff functions as directed.
All applicants are required to successfully complete the Department of Mental Health's Hospital Orientation training during their probationary period.
Hospital Police Officer: All applicants are required to successfully complete the Field Training Officer Program during their probationary period.
Hospital Police Sergeant: All applicants are required to successfully complete the POST Supervisory Course during their probationary period.
Hospital Police Lieutenant: All applicants are required to successfully complete the POST Management Course during their probationary period.
Successful completion of the designated training courses is a requirement for permanent status in these classifications.
Education: Equivalent to completion of the 12th grade. and Training Requirement: Satisfactory completion of the training requirements of Penal Code Section 832. Candidates may be admitted to the examination before completion of Penal Code Section 832, but must successfully complete this training before being eligible for appointment.
Experience: No experience required.
Experience: Two years of experience in the California state service performing the duties of a Hospital Police Officer.
Experience: Three years of full-time, paid California peace officer experience. Two years of college or university level education in criminal justice administration or related field in law enforcement may be substituted for one year of the required experience. Education may be substituted up to a maximum of two years of experience.
Experience: Two years of experience in the California state service performing the duties of a Hospital Police Sergeant.
Experience: Four years of full-time, paid California peace officer experience, two years of which must have been in a supervisory capacity at a level comparable to the rank of Sergeant. Two years of college or university level education in criminal justice administration or a related field in law enforcement may be substituted for one year of the required experience. Education may be substituted up to a maximum of two years of experience.
Knowledge of: Basic principles and practices of law enforcement and basic arithmetic as applied in performing peace officer duties.
Ability to: Apply sound judgment in the enforcement of hospital rules and regulations and applicable State laws necessary for the protection of persons and property; physically apprehend and control patients or law violators; remain calm, and think and act quickly in an emergency; adopt an effective course of action in dealing with unusual situations; use patience, tact, and impartiality in handling disturbances and confrontations; communicate convincingly and effectively; work closely with medical and nursing staff to resolve patient-related problems; deal effectively with patients, the public, and other law enforcement agencies; prepare clear and concise reports.
Knowledge of: Basic principles and practices of law enforcement; procedures and laws on patrol operations, investigations, vehicle code enforcement, laws of arrest, search and seizure, and court operations; hospital and departmental rules, policies, and procedures regarding conduct and control of patients, staff, and visitors; a supervisor's role in training and disciplinary procedures; a supervisor's responsibility for promoting equal opportunity in hiring, employee development and promotion, and for maintaining a work environment that is free of discrimination and harassment.
Ability to: Meet criteria of the Hospital Police Officer; plan, organize, and direct the work of others; interpret and apply hospital and departmental policies and procedures; effectively promote equal opportunity in employment and maintain a work environment that is free of discrimination and harassment.
Knowledge of: The criteria of the Hospital Police Sergeant and the Hospital Police Officer; methods of personnel management, employee development, completed staff work, and training; a supervisor's responsibility for promoting equal opportunity in hiring, employee development and promotion, and for maintaining a work environment that is free of discrimination and harassment.
Ability to: Meet the ability criteria of the Hospital Police Sergeant and the Hospital Police Officer; supervise and evaluate the performance of others; organize and direct staff concerning special tasks and projects; assist in developing hospital policies and procedures.
A sympathetic understanding of the problems of the mentally ill; tolerance, tact, and emotional stability; ability to remain calm in emergency situations; and willingness to work at night and to report for duty at any time when emergencies arise.
Possession and maintenance of sufficient strength, agility, and endurance to perform during physically, mentally, and emotionally stressful and emergency situations encountered on the job; and sufficient hearing and vision to effectively perform the essential functions of the job.
The minimum age of appointment is 21 years of age.
Possession of a valid driver license of the appropriate class issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles. Applicants who do not possess the license will be admitted to the examination but must secure the license prior to appointment.
Citizenship Requirement: Pursuant to Government Code Section 1031(a), in order to be a peace officer, a person must be either a U.S. Citizen or be a permanent resident alien who is eligible for and has applied for U.S. Citizenship. Any permanent resident alien who is employed as a peace officer shall be disqualified from holding that position if his/her application for citizenship is denied.
Felony Disqualification: Pursuant to Government Code Section 1029(a), persons convicted of a felony are disqualified from employment as peace officers except as provided under Welfare and Institutions Code, Division 2, Chapter 3, Article 8, Section 1179(b), or Division 2.5, Chapter 1, Article 4, Section 1772(b). Except as provided for by these statutes, persons convicted of a felony are not eligible to compete for, or be appointed to, positions in these classes.
Background Investigation: Pursuant to Government Code Section 1031, persons successful in peace officer examinations shall be required to undergo a thorough background investigation prior to appointment. Persons unsuccessful in the background investigation cannot be appointed as peace officers.
Medical/Psychological Screening Requirement: Pursuant to Government Code Section 1031(f), persons successful in peace officer examinations are required to successfully pass a thorough medical and psychological screening prior to appointment date. Persons unsuccessful in the medical and psychological screening cannot be appointed as peace officers.
Drug Testing Requirement: Applicants for positions in these classes are required to pass a drug-screening test. (The drug-screening test will be waived for employees who are currently in a designated "sensitive" class for which drug testing is required under State Personnel Board Rule 213.)
* This was approved as an SPB Staff Item on June 1, 2001.