When writing your police officer cover letter, focus on how you can help enforce laws and keep people safe for the department that posted the job. Also, showcase your related skills like problem-solving, community engagement, or reporting and documentation.

This guide will help you write a cover letter that gets you interviews for your next job as a police officer.

Police Officer Cover Letter Templates and Examples

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How To Write a Police Officer Cover Letter

Your police officer cover letter should usually have five sections, in this order:

1. Heading

At the top of the page, include:

  • Your name and contact information
  • The date
  • The recipient’s name, title, organization, and contact information (when available)

(Note: Feel free to omit this section if you send your letter by email and your contact details are part of your signature.)

Example


Ashley Handley
Police Officer | [email protected] | (654) 321-0987 | 432 Main Road, Salt Lake City, UT 65432

April 5, 2024

Alan Chen
Senior Hiring Manager
Salt Lake City Police Department
(789) 012-3456
[email protected]

2. Salutation

If you can’t find the recipient’s name, use a variation of “Dear Hiring Manager.”

Example


Dear Ms. Mustafa:

Dear Western Regional Police Department:

3. “Hook” or introduction

Catch the reader’s attention by citing an achievement from your resume or a key credential the police force seeks in applicants.

Example


As a longtime member of the Northern Central Police Department, I have a wealth of experience with patrolling the local area and building relationships in the community. I have a firm sense of justice, and I proactively involve myself in the life of the neighborhood to foster trust and respect from the residents. I am certain that I can continue these practices and serve with the Western Regional Police Department to the best of my ability.

4. Body paragraph(s)

Explain why the job or employer interests you. Then, cite a few more of your key achievements or qualifications, possibly using bullet points.

Example


As a dedicated officer with over two years’ experience and a strong sense of commitment to the Salt Lake City community, the opportunity to protect and improve the lives of local residents appeals to me. My recent achievements demonstrate my suitability for the role:

  • Achieving a 99.8% accuracy rating for incident reports last year
  • Receiving praise three times during performance appraisals for my appropriate and proportional use of physical force
  • Demonstrating cool-headedness and quick-thinking when responding to a serious security incident to prevent significant loss of life

5. Closing

Finally, request an interview for the position.

Example


I would like the opportunity to discuss how my abilities can help the Air Force Civilian Service achieve its aims in 2024. Please get in touch to schedule a suitable interview.

Sincerely,

Charles Flynn

Police Officer Cover Letter Tips

1. Show you can keep people safe and property secure

Start your letter strong with a clear example of your success as a police officer. Cite an achievement that shows you’ve excelled at responding to incidents, apprehending suspects, preventing theft, gathering evidence, or otherwise protecting the public and upholding agency standards.

Example


Last year, I successfully de-escalated 87% of high-conflict situations without the need to resort to force, making me the top-performing officer in my department in achieving peaceful resolutions. My ability to remain calm under pressure and my excellent persuasive skills enabled me to calm heated altercations. I hope to demonstrate the same outstanding interpersonal skills as a patrol officer at the Salt Lake City Police Department.

2. Explain why you’re drawn to the opportunity

On a separate document or sheet of paper, take 10 minutes to brainstorm why this police role interests you, based on the job posting or employer website. For example, maybe the role focuses on narcotics, an area of crime prevention that overlaps with your work and volunteer background. Or maybe you’re applying to serve a population or region you’re already familiar with or would like to return to. Also, think about how the organization’s stated mission or values compare to your own.

When you’re done brainstorming, review your notes: Do any stand out as important or persuasive? Take another 10 minutes to brainstorm and elaborate on them. Repeat this process until you have one to three concise sentences speaking to the job opening at hand. By adding these to your cover letter, you can show hiring managers you read their job posting and are responding to it directly.

Example


As a dedicated officer with more than nine years of experience, the Air Force Civilian Service’s reputation for investigative excellence appeals to me.

3. Highlight your other law enforcement skills

Add a short list of bullet points to show your success in other key work areas for a police officer, like crime scene management, community education, or victim and suspect interviewing. With each bullet point, show the skill in action. For instance, you could show leadership by describing how you created an officer training course on de-escalation tactics.

Example


The following accomplishments show I have the knowledge and skills to become an asset to your service:

  • Acting promptly and with sound judgment as the on-scene commander responding to an active shooter incident, resulting in zero casualties in a high-risk situation
  • Achieving a score of 99.9% for implementing routine responses during spot checks in 2023
  • Training seven new recruits in September 2023 to increase their knowledge and application of intelligence gathering protocols

Police Officer Text-Only Cover Letter Templates and Examples

  • Entry-Level
  • Mid-Career
  • Senior-Level

Charles Flynn
Police Officer | [email protected] | (012) 345-6789 | 432 My Boulevard, San Antonio, TX 43210

April 6, 2024

Saima Mustafa
Senior Hiring Manager
Air Force Civilian Service
(876) 543-2109
[email protected]

Dear Ms. Mustafa,

Last year, I successfully resolved 98% of straightforward incidents by apprehending and detaining a suspect within the department’s target timeframe. My extensive knowledge of investigative techniques and intelligence gathering allowed me to achieve outstanding outcomes and protect the public. I hope to demonstrate the same skills as an officer in the Air Force Civilian Service.

The following accomplishments show I have the knowledge and skills to become an asset to your service:

  • Acting promptly and with sound judgment as the on-scene commander responding to an active shooter incident, resulting in zero casualties in a high-risk situation
  • Achieving a score of 99.9% for implementing routine responses during spot checks in 2023
  • Training seven new recruits in September 2023 to increase their knowledge and application of intelligence gathering protocols

I would like the opportunity to discuss how my abilities can help the Air Force Civilian Service achieve its aims in 2024. Please get in touch to schedule a suitable interview.

Sincerely,

Charles Flynn

P.S. I would like to explain why I was singled out for promotion in March 2019.

Police Officer Cover Letter Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best way to start a cover letter?-

With a clear example of your success in the type of police role you’re pursuing. The concept of “show, don’t tell” absolutely applies to your cover letter’s first paragraph. For instance, don’t just tell the hiring manager you’re a “proactive law enforcement professional.” Show you’re proactive by citing a time you exceeded expectations or found a new way to improve department procedures.

Do I really need a cover letter?-

Yes, in most cases. In today’s job search, employers usually require or allow you to send a cover letter along with your resume (a notable exception for your field is the Federal Bureau of Investigation). While not every hiring manager reads or prioritizes them, a well-crafted letter can only help you stand out from other applicants. It will also help you clarify what points to emphasize during the interview.

What traits are useful to highlight on my cover letter?-

Desired qualities in police officers include empathy, judgment, leadership, resilience, and adaptability. Consider which of these traits best describe you, then give an example or two of how you’ve applied them in a work setting.

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Jacob Meade

Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW, ACRW)

Jacob Meade is a resume writer and editor with nearly a decade of experience. His writing method centers on understanding and then expressing each person’s unique work history and strengths toward their career goal. Jacob has enjoyed working with jobseekers of all ages and career levels, finding that a clear and focused resume can help people from any walk of life. He is an Academy Certified Resume Writer (ACRW) with the Resume Writing Academy, and a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW) with the Professional Association of Resume Writers & Career Coaches.

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