Beat Cop

Protect people in one particular neighborhood.

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$32,000 – $84,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Beat Cops do?

Beat Cops protect the residents and businesses of a particular neighborhood. The job of a Beat Cop is to know the area—and the people—well so he or she can work to prevent crime. Walking, riding, or driving the streets of their assigned neighborhoods, Beat Cops develop strong relationships with the people in the area, built on trust and respect. If you’re a Beat Cop, law enforcement is your responsibility, and establishing close bonds with the residents makes it much easier.

Combing the streets of the area, you put your keen observation skills to the test as you identify suspicious persons, behaviors, and activities. Knowing what to expect on the streets of your beat (the community or area you’re assigned to) allows you to quickly pick up on anything unusual or different.

Your mere presence often thwarts would-be criminals. Since you’re often seen in the area chatting with the locals, potential perpetrators know their activities will not go unreported for long. Neighborhood residents develop a comfortable rapport with you, and treat you as part of their normal environment.

Physical strength and stamina are required, as you spend entire shifts on your feet, walking and sometimes running after criminals. You may also have to do some bending and climbing as you write parking citations and help stranded cats get down from trees. In exchange for assistance in keeping the area safe, you are rewarded with friendships, neighborhood bonds, and the occasional cup of complimentary coffee.

Should I be a Beat Cop?

You should have a certificate degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Calm Under Pressure: You keep your cool when dealing with highly stressful situations.
  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.

  • Also known as: Community Police Officer, Constable, Cop

    How to become a Beat Cop

    Most Beat Cops have a Certificate or higher. Chart?chd=s:9hjoab&chl=no+college+%2842%25%29|certificate+%2823%25%29|associate%27s+%2824%25%29|bachelor%27s+%2810%25%29||doctorate+%281%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,42,42
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