BPD at a Glance
The Burlington Police Department is one of the top police departments in the state of North Carolina and even the nation. Our officers are highly trained and passionate about the community they serve, and we provide excellent opportunities for staff development and advancement. We encourage prospective employees and everyone to explore below the different units our officers and civilian staff have the chance to be involved in with us.
- Criminal Investigations Division
- Community Relations Division
- School Resource Officers
- K9 Unit
- Traffic Unit
- Training Section
- Professional Staff
The Criminal Investigations Division is comprised of three different units: Special Victims, Major Crimes, and Mobile Detectives. There are currently fifteen (15) detectives throughout the division. An SVU detective is responsible for investigating cases that involve domestic violence, child or elder abuse, and other cases of a sensitive nature. They receive specialized training in unique investigative tactics for investigating these types of crimes and interacting with their victims. Major crimes detectives are responsible for investigative shootings or other major violent crimes cases. They handle gang-related and other similar types of cases. The mobile detectives handle fraud and breaking and entering cases. They respond to new incidents to ensure that all important information is gathered.
The Community Relations Division is involved in various community actions and events to support the community and promote positive police involvement in our area. CRD is staffed by one captain, a lieutenant, and a community relations officer. They are responsible for events like our yearly National Night Out where the department goes into the community to visit with our neighbors and discuss issues. They work to help the community prevent crime through initiatives like the #9pmroutine and Crimestoppers. They also partner in events like our Cops Care program, Community Academy, and our Junior Police Academy.
The Patrol Division is the largest section within the Burlington Police Department. They are the initial responder to a variety of calls that come into our Communications Center. Patrol officers can receive training in many different specialities, such as Drug Recognition Experts (DREs) and all of our officers are required to become certified in Crisis Intervention Training (CIT). All new officers go through BLET (Basic Law Enforcement Training) followed by a period of field training with an experienced officer.
Student Resource Officers are a specialized unit under the Community Relations Division. Each officer is assigned to a particular school within Burlington city limits. They are there to create a positive interaction with students and keep these schools safe. Many of our SROs serve as D.A.R.E.officers in addition to being an SRO. They teach students throughout the school year and then participate in D.A.R.E. Days at the end of the year. They also host High Five Fridays to greet the students as they come to school at the end of the week as well as other events.
The K9 Unit is currently comprised of several handlers and their canines. These dogs are utilized for tracking of missing persons or fleeing subjects. They are also used for various types of drug searches. The dogs and their handlers attend a variety of training sessions in addition to training on a weekly basis. In order to join the canine unit, officers are required to have a minimum of two years of experience on patrol with BPD. Handlers and their canines are assigned to a particular patrol team to assist on calls as needed.
The Burlington Police Department participates in a SWAT unit that is comprised of officers from BPD and other nearby law enforcement agencies. They are utilized on large-scale drug busts or during other high-stakes situations like barricaded subjects. They train at our local training facility for a variety of situations. All members of our SWAT unit are part of other divisions or units with SWAT being an additional duty.
The Traffic Unit's primary duties are traffic control and direction. They are utilized for parades or as escorts. They also participate in traffic safety initiatives like drunk driver checkpoints, rail safety week, and others. They are staffed by one sergeant and one officer at present. They have motorcycle officers who participate in bike safety demonstrations as well as other traffic safety courses. They are also responsible for traffic enforcement, particularly around our downtown area.
The Training Section is responsible for coordinating all department and officer training needs. The state only requires 24 hours annually for law enforcement while the average BPD officer completes approximately 100 hours annually. All of this training is coordinated through the Training Section. Officers receive training in everything from firearms to crisis intervention. They attend training sessions both in-person and virtually across the state and occasionally some out-of-state training seminars. The Training Section is responsible for seeking out and approving additional officer training opportunities. They are staffed by one sergeant, several officers, and a civilian admin.
BPD employs approximately thirty (30) civilian staff members in different departments. We have several civilian administrators as well as our records, evidence, and communications staff. Some units have additional civilian staff who work as assistants for investigations or in other capacities. Our civilian staff are an important part of the department who facilitate many vital aspects of the department's functions.
Read more about our many civilian staffed departments below: