There are many specialty positions open for Sidney police officers. Some include:
Tactical Response Team (T.R.T.): Our TRT team (same as a S.W.A.T. team) is a joint operation with Piqua P.D. This allows both departments to share resources, not only in manning but also in equipment. Among other things, the Piqua TRT team brings an armored vehicle. The Sidney TRT team brings hostage negotiation equipment, including a rescue box from which phone calls can be recorded, muted, and a throw phone can be attached. The Sidney team is led by Sergeant Macke who is the TRT Commander and Officer Dembski who is the Team Leader. To get onto the team, applicants must have been an officer with our department for two years, apply, go through a physical fitness and firearm qualification, and rigorous interview. All TRT members must meet certain qualifications on the physical fitness test each year and on range qualifications each year to remain on the team. The Hostage Negotiation Team (H.N.T.) currently has three Sidney members and Piqua has two. The H.N.T. reports directly to the TRT commander but is their own unit. To become a member of the H.N.T. one must have two years of experience and pass a panel interview. Officers will then be sent to negotiation training.
Detective: The Sidney Police Department has two narcotics detectives, a general detective, and a juvenile detective. Narcotics detectives use tips from the community, officers working the street, and informants to get drugs off our streets. They write search warrants, do surveillance, and present drug cases to grand jury. The general detective works on large felony cases from the road, such as burglaries and forgery. The juvenile detective works sex offenses that occur in the juvenile realm, ranging from pornography to rape. All detectives handle homicides and major felonies such as felonious assault. They also investigate suspicious deaths. They work Monday through Friday and take turns being on call on the weekends.
Honor Guard: The Honor Guard team is an opportunity to show formal respect while in uniform. The team attends the London fallen officers memorial every year and has been for over 25 years. They attend Dragon’s games and other ceremonies.
K9 Unit: To become a K9 officer, one must demonstrate proficiency and interest in the area of drugs and narcotics. Officers hold a K9 position for the work life of the K9 (typically around nine years).
Field Training Officer: These officers are responsible for training new hires. These new employees come from different backgrounds including military, prior law enforcement, and just academy experience. They train with two different field training officers for 90 days (three months).
Accident Reconstructionist: This specialty position focuses on reconstructing major accidents. These are often crashes that involve major injury or death to involved parties. Determinations about which driver is at fault is made from witness statements, pattern, length, and type of debris, among other things.
Community Resource Officer: This position is a very important one to our police department. Our community resource officer is our connection with the community. Sir Robert Peel who was fundamental in creating police work as we know it stated that “The Police are the Public; the Public are the Police”. It is essential that law enforcement has an active connection to the public that we are both a part of and are sworn to serve. The Community Resource Officer goes to city schools to make contact with the children, attends driver's education courses, runs civilian academies, and much more. This position is held for five years.
Forensic Investigator: Forensic Investigators handle juvenile sex offense interviews. They are specially trained to interview children for traumatic events. They work closely with children’s services and the prosecutor’s office.
Range Instructor: Range instructors assist all officers in qualifying with their firearms every year. They also help set up firearm training and courses.
Defensive Tactics Instructor: This specialty involves training officers in defensive tactics every year. Our program now is primarily jiu-jitsu based.
Driving Instructor: These instructors assist with running the driving courses every year for officers. They are certified by OPOTA to teach driving.
These positions vary in how much time officers devote to them. The full time positions are Community Resource, K9, and Detective.
Promotions: There are also opportunities for officers to advance in pay grade and responsibility in promotions. The first promotion an officer has is to Sergeant. Sergeants oversee each shift and there are two Sergeants per shift, a senior and a junior Sergeant. Once promoted to Sergeant, officers have the opportunity to be promoted to Captain. We have three Captains within the department. One oversees the detective section, one administrative work, and one oversees operations. The final opportunity for advancement within the department is to the Chief of Police. The Chief oversees all operations and is the spokesperson for the department.