PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - Now's your chance to be a part of the Pascagoula Police Department. The department is looking to hire officers, and the deadline to apply is Friday, June 15 at 5 p.m.
There are three spots available. To qualify, you'll have to pass a physical training (PT) test and a written test.
"So far, I have not seen anything negative. They're quick to respond whenever we call," said Pascagoula resident Joy Gable.
Joy was celebrating her birthday Wednesday with her brother Mike at Paradise Deli & Grill. She said safety is the main priority for her and her family, and it starts at home.
"We have a Pascagoula Facebook page. Well, it's Pine Crest Watch. It's a neighborhood watch Facebook page, and we look out for each other and post when things happen in the neighborhood," Joy said.
She said Pascagoula officers are always ready to help. Her brother Mike agrees.
"I know several of the officers, and whenever I've needed them for anything, they've always been there to help," Mike Wixon said.
Captain Doug Adams said the three open slots are available because current officers are retiring or leaving law enforcement altogether.
"Seventy of them are made up of first time officers that have never been to the academy or anything. Then we have approximately 20 who are lateral transfers from other agencies," Captain Adams said, referring to applicants who've already dropped off their resume.
Captain Adams said those with experience don't necessarily get first dibs. The department likes to have a mix of first-time officers and those who have worked with other agencies.
The PT Test consists of a 1.5 mile run, agility test and pushups, all based on age and gender
"For instance, a male between 20 and 29 years old has to do it in a little over 18 minutes. Females, it's a little bit more for them," Captain Adams said.
Those are the standards set by the state of Mississippi. Pascagoula does require a polygraph test at the local level and an extensive background check.
The consensus on the street is that officers are stepping up to the challenge.
"They run the streets. Have everybody that is doing bad, they get them off the streets. Well, in my neighborhood they do anyway," said Heather Billmann, who works at Paradise Deli & Grill.
Joy added, "It's just a great place. Pascagoula's a great place."
Once the application process closes, candidates will be notified and scheduled for the PT and written tests within a couple of weeks.
The starting pay for an officer is around $30,000 annually.
Click here to apply.