Lateral Entry Program

Experience valued. And rewarded.

Join us in a city of opportunity.

CMPD is always on the lookout for outstanding certified, sworn law enforcement officers to join our ranks.

If you’re interested in accelerating your career at a progressive, technologically advanced department in one of the nation’s fastest-growing and family-friendly cities, CMPD is the place for you.

You’ll find excellent opportunities for advancement, a variety of specialized units to choose from, and a supportive team that shares your goal of excellence.

Among the benefits of making the move to CMPD and Charlotte:

Pass an entry level written examination.

Competitive salary commensurate with prior qualifying experience

Paid training time

Residency incentive, if moving into a residence within the city limits of Charlotte

10% incentive pay for 4-year college degree

5% incentive pay for 2-year college degree

5% Incentive pay for proficiency in 15 different languages

Promotion opportunities in as few as 2 years at CMPD (if promotion requirements are met)

Weekly paycheck

Leave time (up to 60 days sick and 20 days vacation) may be transferred from previous agency

● Various medical benefit plans to choose from as an employee, including Health Savings Accounts, which can be used for future retiree medical expenses

6 weeks paid parental leave

Uniforms and equipment provided

$7,500 Hiring Bonus

Structured to reward you throughout training and after your first year of service.

Learn More Here

Lateral Entry /Incentive Base Salary

Police Officer Years of Service
Starting Salary

Step 2: 2-3 Years of Experience


Step 3: 4-5 Years of Experience


Step 4: 5-6 Years of Experience


Step 5: 7-8 Years of Experience


Police Incentives:

Second Language, Training Officer:


2-year Degree or Qualifying Military Service: (Sergeant not eligible)


4-year Degree: (Sergeant not eligible)


What are the minimum qualifications for the Lateral Entry program?

  • A minimum of 2 years of full-time employment as a sworn law enforcement officer.
  • Sworn service in a non-law enforcement capacity does not qualify. For purposes of this policy, a non-law enforcement capacity includes: Deputies who work in jails, courtrooms, or communications.
  • Specialized law enforcement agencies do not qualify for lateral entry regardless of sworn status. This includes: transit police, campus police, housing authority police, department of corrections, park rangers, private police, etc.
  • Agencies must answer 911 calls for service and have comparable duties to CMPD. Note: State Police agencies and the NC Highway Patrol qualify under this policy.
  • Applicants who have been separated from full-time sworn service for less than a year qualify under this policy. Applicants separated for over a year but less than 3 years are evaluated on a case by case basis.

Are there additional requirements for out-of-state lateral transfers in the hiring process?

Yes. In addition to completing the full CMPD background process, out of state lateral transfers must obtain three additional items. (These documents are required by the NC CJ Education and Training Standards Commission and are necessary to be sworn in as a Law Enforcement Officer in North Carolina).

  1. A letter from your previous agency/ agencies detailing your dates of full-time, sworn service and that you left or are leaving the agency in good standing. The letter MUST state that you were full-time, sworn, and are in good standing with the agency.
  2. A copy of your Basic Law Enforcement Training course certificate of completion. Please Note: This is not your law enforcement certificate, but the diploma you received indicating you graduated from your state’s basic law enforcement training program. If you did not receive a diploma or have misplaced it and cannot obtain a new copy, you must obtain a letter from your state’s law enforcement commission (P.O.S.T., Justice Academy, etc.) stating the start date and graduation date of your basic training, as well as the number of hours of basic training.
  3. A topical breakdown/syllabus of the courses you completed in BLET.

How does the lateral academy compare to the traditional recruit academy?

In-state lateral trainees will attend a 4-week academy covering specific CMPD rules and procedures. In-state Laterals will then be sworn in and assigned to one of thirteen patrol divisions to complete a field training phase.

Out-of-state lateral trainees will also complete the 4-week academy with the in-state lateral trainees and will be sworn in after the 4-week academy. Out-of-state trainees will then split their time between a patrol division and the academy.

During the 4-week lateral academy, out-of-state trainee’s training and experience will be evaluated by the State Education and Training Standards Commission.

The State will then determine how many additional credit hours and topics out-of-state trainees will be required to complete. (Note: All out-of-state trainees will be required to pass the 96-hour legal training block). All out-of-state trainees will be required to successfully pass the NC BLET State Exam within one year of their swear in date.

Interested in making the move?

Call for more information: 704-432-1602

Or begin the application process here