TITLE 11

Crimes and Criminal Procedure

Law-Enforcement Administration

CHAPTER 84. DELAWARE POLICE TRAINING PROGRAM


As used in this chapter:

(1) "Approved school'' means a school authorized by the Council to provide a mandatory training and education for police officers as prescribed in this chapter.

(2) "Articulation agreement'' means a written agreement for the transfer of academic credit.

(3) "Council'' means the Council on Police Training.

(4) "Permanent appointment'' means appointment by the authority of any municipality or governmental unit in or of this State or the University of Delaware to permanent status as a police officer.

(5) "Police officer'' means a sworn member of a police force or other law-enforcement agency of this State or of any county or municipality who is responsible for the prevention and the detection of crime and the enforcement of laws of this State or other governmental units within the State.

a. For purposes of this chapter this term shall include permanent full-time law-enforcement officers of the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, state fire marshals, municipal fire marshals who are graduates of a Delaware Police Academy which is accredited/authorized by the Council on Police Training, sworn members of the City of Wilmington Fire Department who have graduated from a Delaware Police Academy which is authorized/accredited by the Council on Police Training, environmental protection officers, enforcement agents of the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, agents of the State Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Enforcement, officers or agents of the State Police Drug Diversion Unit, officers or agents of the Delaware Police Sex Offender Task Force, agents employed by a state, county or municipal law-enforcement agency engaged in monitoring sex offenders, state detective or special investigator of the Department of Justice and officers of the University of Delaware Police Division, Delaware State University Police Department.

b. For purposes of this chapter this term shall not include the following:

1. A sheriff, regular deputy sheriff or constable;

2. A security force for a state agency or other governmental unit; or, a seasonal, temporary or part-time law-enforcement officer of the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control;

3. A person holding police power by virtue of occupying any other position or office.

(6) "Seasonal appointment'' means appointment for less than 6 months each year but more than 4 weeks for police duties necessitated by seasonal demands.

11 Del. C. 1953, § 8401; 57 Del. Laws, c. 261; 57 Del. Laws, c. 670, § 1A; 63 Del. Laws, c. 31, § 1; 68 Del. Laws, c. 172, §§ 1, 2; 68 Del. Laws, c. 330, § 1; 72 Del. Laws, c. 367, § 2; 72 Del. Laws, c. 371, § 2; 72 Del. Laws, c. 379, § 3; 73 Del. Laws, c. 195, § 3[2]; 73 Del. Laws, c. 249, § 2; 74 Del. Laws, c. 250, § 2; 74 Del. Laws, c. 331, § 1; 76 Del. Laws, c. 43, § 2; 76 Del. Laws, c. 163, § 1; 78 Del. Laws, c. 155, § 4; 79 Del. Laws, c. 200, § 1.;

(a) The Council shall be composed of 12 members.

(b) The Council shall be composed of: a chairperson to be appointed by and to serve at the pleasure of the Governor; the Attorney General; the Superintendent of the Delaware State Police; the Chief of the City of Wilmington Police; the Chief of the New Castle County Police Department; the Chief of the City of Dover Police Department; the Chief of the City of Newark Police Department; the Secretary of Education; the President of the Delaware League of Local Governments; the mayor or police commissioner of an incorporated municipality in Kent County, to be appointed by the Governor; the mayor or police commissioner of an incorporated municipality in Sussex County, to be appointed by the Governor; the Chairperson of the Delaware Police Chiefs' Council, Inc. The Chairperson shall have had substantial practical experience in the field of law enforcement.

11 Del. C. 1953, § 8403; 57 Del. Laws, c. 261; 57 Del. Laws, c. 670, §§ 1B, 1C; 63 Del. Laws, c. 31, § 1; 65 Del. Laws, c. 492, §§ 1, 2; 68 Del. Laws, c. 49, §§ 1, 2; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1; 73 Del. Laws, c. 65, § 9.;

(a) A Vice-Chairperson and a Secretary shall be elected from among the members of the Council. The Council shall hold no less than 2 regular meetings each year and may meet at such other times as it may determine. The Chairperson shall fix the time and place of such meetings in the Commissioner's discretion, but upon written request of any 3 members, the Chairperson shall call a meeting pursuant to the terms of such request. Seven members shall constitute a quorum. Each member of the Council may have a proxy to represent the member at Council meetings.

(b) Notwithstanding any provision of law, Council membership shall not disqualify any member from holding any other public or private employment or constitute a forfeit of such office.

(c) Council members shall receive no compensation for their services but shall be allowed their actual and necessary expenses incurred in the performance of their duties.

11 Del. C. 1953, § 8404; 57 Del. Laws, c. 261; 57 Del. Laws, c. 670, § 1C; 63 Del. Laws, c. 31, § 1; 65 Del. Laws, c. 492, § 3; 68 Del. Laws, c. 49, § 3; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1.;

(a) The Council may:

(1) Establish minimum qualifications for applicants as police officers;

(2) Establish minimum educational and training qualifications requisite to permanent appointment as a police officer;

(3) Issue certification of completion of police officer training prescribed under this chapter;

(4) Suspend or revoke certification in the event that an individual:

a. Obtained a certificate by fraud or deceit;

b. Has failed to successfully complete any in-service or advanced training required by the Council;

c. Has been convicted of a felony, or of a misdemeanor involving moral turpitude, or of any local, state or federal criminal offense involving, but not limited to, theft, fraud, or violation of the public trust, or of any drug law;

d. Has been found, after examination by a licensed psychologist or psychiatrist, to be psychologically or emotionally unfit to perform the duties or exercise the powers and authority of a police officer;

e. Has received a hearing pursuant to the Police Officer's Bill of Rights, or who has knowingly and voluntarily waived that individual's right to such a hearing and:

1. Has been discharged from employment with a law enforcement agency for a breach of internal discipline; or

2. Has retired or resigned prior to the entry of findings of fact concerning an alleged breach of internal discipline for which the individual could have been legitimately discharged had the individual not retired from or resigned that individual's position prior to the imposition of discipline by the employing agency.

(5) Prescribe standards for in-service or continued training of police officers;

(6) Establish minimum educational and training qualifications for seasonal employment as a police officer;

(7) Establish certification and recertification requirements for police officer applicants who have previously been employed with permanent appointment as a police officer but have not been so employed within the 12 months prior to application;

(8) Prescribe equipment and facility standards for schools at which police training courses shall be conducted, including but not limited to existing county or municipal schools;

(9) Establish minimum training requirements, attendance requirements and standards of operations for police training schools;

(10) Prescribe minimum qualifications for instructors at such schools and certify, as qualified, or decertify such instructors to their particular courses of study;

(11) Approve and issue certificates of approval to such police training schools, to inspect such schools from time to time and to revoke for cause any approval or certificate issued to such schools;

(12) Consult and cooperate with all agencies of government, state and local, concerning the development and administration of the training and standard program and to contract with such agencies as it deems necessary to the performance of its powers and duties;

(13) Accept or receive grants or donations from any source, public or private, for the purposes of this chapter;

(14) Make such rules and regulations as may be necessary to carry out the purposes and objectives of this chapter;

(15) Provide a modification from the application of any provision of this chapter or the rules and regulations promulgated thereunder, for any police officer of a municipality if:

a. The police officer is employed on a seasonal basis; and

b. The municipality makes application for such modification and establishes that it will suffer a hardship if the modification is not granted;

(16) Establish an approved training program for seasonal police officers which shall be required prior to active police duty, and in addition, if the officer is to be armed, that the police officer be certified in the use of firearms at an approved police training school;

(17) Authorize articulation agreements between an approved school and an accredited institution of higher education located in the State for the provision of police officer training prescribed under this chapter;

(18) Establish the criteria to afford reciprocity to police officers certified in other states by an agency like the Council or by the federal government by waiving some or all of the minimum education and training qualifications for police officers under this chapter if they have satisfied substantially equivalent education and training;

(19) Mandate training for all persons seeking permanent or seasonal appointment as a police officer in the detection, prosecution and prevention of child sexual and physical abuse, exploitation and domestic violence, and the obligations imposed by Delaware law, including § 903 of Title 16, and federal law in the prompt reporting thereof. Such training shall be coordinated under §§ 911 and 912(b)(4) of Title 16 to ensure consistent trainings across disciplines.

(b) The Director of the Delaware State Police Training Division shall be responsible for administering the mandatory training and education for police officers program with responsibility and authority to obtain professional assistance from other police and professional organizations to accomplish the purposes and objectives of the program.

11 Del. C. 1953, § 8405; 57 Del. Laws, c. 261; 57 Del. Laws, c. 670, § 1D; 63 Del. Laws, c. 31, § 1; 67 Del. Laws, c. 313, § 1; 68 Del. Laws, c. 330, §§ 2-4; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1; 74 Del. Laws, c. 331, §§ 2-4; 77 Del. Laws, c. 323, § 3.;

In all situations where the provisions of § 8404(a)(4) or § 8410(b) of this title are to be applied to or invoked against any agency or individual, that agency or individual shall be entitled to a hearing in the manner prescribed herein:

(1) The Chairperson shall select 3 members of the Council to comprise a board which will hear evidence on the allegation (hereinafter "board'').

(2) Upon conclusion of the hearing provided for in this section, the board shall submit its findings and recommendation to the full Council in writing for consideration and vote.

(3) The ultimate findings of the Council shall be final, except that any ruling adverse to any party participating in the hearing may be appealed to the Superior Court within 15 days of receipt of written notification of said finding. Absent an appeal, all findings of the Council shall become final upon expiration of said appeal deadline.

(4) All hearings shall be conducted in accordance with the Administrative Procedures Act [Chapter 101 of Title 29].

67 Del. Laws, c. 313, § 2; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1.;

(a) Except as provided in subsection (d) of this section, every municipality or other governmental unit of this State employing or intending to employ police officers shall require their attendance at an approved school. Every such municipality, other governmental unit or the University of Delaware or Delaware State University shall require that no person be given or accept an appointment as a police officer unless such person has successfully completed the required police training and education course at an approved school.

(b) Police officers already serving under permanent appointment on July 11, 1969, shall not be compelled to meet this requirement as a condition of:

(1) Tenure;

(2) Continuing employment;

(3) Reemployment; or

(4) Employment by another police agency, provided that the period of suspended services under paragraph (3) or (4) of this subsection does not exceed 12 months.

Failure of any such police officer to fulfill such requirements as the Council may hereafter establish by regulation shall not make the officer ineligible for promotion to which the officer might otherwise be eligible. The exemptions granted under this subsection shall not be construed to include in-service or continued training requirements which may be established by Council.

(c) All police officers and all persons seeking permanent appointment as a police officer shall undergo training to assist them in identifying symptoms of mental illness, mental disability, and/or physical disability and in responding appropriately to situations involving persons having a mental illness, mental disability, and/or physical disability. The training must include instruction concerning the interaction between police officers and minors that have a mental illness, mental disability and/or physical disability. Additionally, all police officers serving under permanent appointment as of January 1, 2007, must undertake this training by January 1, 2008.

(d) Nothing contained in this chapter shall limit the authority, power or duties of the Secretary of Public Safety as set forth in § 8203 of Title 29.

11 Del. C. 1953, § 8406; 57 Del. Laws, c. 261; 57 Del. Laws, c. 670, § 1D; 63 Del. Laws, c. 31, § 1; 67 Del. Laws, c. 230, §§ 1, 2; 68 Del. Laws, c. 330, § 5; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1; 72 Del. Laws, c. 367, § 3; 75 Del. Laws, c. 292, § 1.;

During any training program, the compensation or wages of any trainee police officer shall be the responsibility of the employing authority. The responsibility for providing all other costs, including but not limited to tuition, living expenses, books and equipment excluding transportation costs of any trainee police officer shall be that of the Council.

11 Del. C. 1953, § 8408; 57 Del. Laws, c. 261; 57 Del. Laws, c. 670, § 1D; 63 Del. Laws, c. 31, § 1.;

The General Assembly shall appropriate each year to the Council through the Department of Safety and Homeland Security such funds as are necessary for the purpose of carrying out this chapter.

11 Del. C. 1953, § 8410; 57 Del. Laws, c. 261; 57 Del. Laws, c. 670, § 1E; 63 Del. Laws, c. 31, § 1; 74 Del. Laws, c. 110, § 138.;

Every municipality or other governmental unit of this State or the University of Delaware or Delaware State University intending to employ on a permanent basis police officers who have satisfactorily completed the mandatory training as required under this chapter and who have completed their training while in the employ of another municipality or another governmental unit of this State or the University of Delaware or Delaware State University within 2 years from the date of satisfactory completion of such mandatory training, shall reimburse the municipality or other governmental unit or the University of Delaware or Delaware State University with whom the police officer was employed at the time of attending the mandatory training program for the cost of training such officer, which shall include the salary, uniforms and equipment and other training expenses incurred while the officer was attending the mandatory training program. During the first year after completion of the mandatory training program the municipality or other governmental unit or the University of Delaware or Delaware State University by whom the police officer was employed at the time of attending the mandatory training program shall be reimbursed for 100 percent for those expenses. During the second year the municipality or other governmental unit shall be reimbursed for 50 percent of those expenses.

11 Del. C. 1953, § 8411; 59 Del. Laws, c. 102, § 1; 63 Del. Laws, c. 31, § 1; 72 Del. Laws, c. 367, § 4.;

(a) Police officers of the State or any county or municipality or the University of Delaware or Delaware State University which do not meet the requirements of this chapter and the criteria as established by the Council shall not have the authority to enforce the laws of the State.

(b) A police force of any county or municipality which does not meet the requirements of this chapter and the criteria established by the Council will be ineligible to apply for or receive state aid to local law-enforcement funds.

63 Del. Laws, c. 31, § 1; 72 Del. Laws, c. 367, § 5.;