Frequently Asked Questions

We try to help you in advance with any questions you might have about The Reserve Program and provide the answers here.


Is there an upper age limit to join the Reserve Academy?

There is no upper age limit, but you need to be in good physical condition, especially for the Level II and Level I academies.


How do I know if I am overweight?

 Although there are no minimum or maximum height requirements, the height-weight relationship of each applicant must either (1) fall within the ranges in the following table, or (2) if the applicant’s height is not included on the table, be found to be acceptable after individual evaluation.  Height measurements are made without shoes.  Weight measurements are made without shoes and coat.  Applicants whose height falls between any of the measurements shown on the table must meet the weight requirements of the lower height.  Individuals who do not meet the standard shall have their body fat measured.  Female candidates whose body fat is 33% or less may qualify.  Male candidates whose body fat is 22% or less may qualify.


HEIGHT                 WEIGHT                                    HEIGHT                       WEIGHT
5 ft. 0 in.        110 lbs. to 143 lbs.                           5 ft. 10 in.            144 lbs. to 185 lbs.
5 ft. 1 in.        112 lbs. to 146 lbs.                           5 ft. 11 in.            148 lbs. to 191 lbs.
5 ft. 2 in.        115 lbs. to 149 lbs.                           6 ft. 00 in.            152 lbs. to 197 lbs.
5 ft. 3 in.        118 lbs. to 152 lbs.                           6 ft. 01 in.            156 lbs. to 203 lbs.
5 ft. 4 in.        121 lbs. to 155 lbs.                           6 ft. 02 in.            160 lbs. to 209 lbs.
5 ft. 5 in.        124 lbs. to 158 lbs.                           6 ft. 03 in.            164 lbs. to 215 lbs.
5 ft. 6 in.        128 lbs. to 163 lbs.                           6 ft. 04 in.            168 lbs. to 221 lbs.
5 ft. 7 in.        132 lbs. to 168 lbs.                           6 ft. 05 in.            172 lbs. to 227 lbs.
5 ft. 8 in.        136 lbs. to 173 lbs.                           6 ft. 06 in.            176 lbs. to 233 lbs.
5 ft. 9 in.        140 lbs. to 179 lbs.                           6 ft. 07 in.            180 lbs. to 239 lbs.

HEIGHT                  WEIGHT                                   HEIGHT                       WEIGHT
5 ft. 0 in.        095 lbs. to 129 lbs.                           5 ft. 10 in.            131 lbs. to 180 lbs.
5 ft. 1 in.        098 lbs. to 132 lbs.                           5 ft. 11 in.            135 lbs. to 186 lbs.
5 ft. 2 in.        101 lbs. to 135 lbs.                           6 ft. 00 in.            139 lbs. to 192 lbs.
5 ft. 3 in.        104 lbs. to 138 lbs.                           6 ft. 01 in.            143 lbs. to 197 lbs.
5 ft. 4 in.        107 lbs. to 144 lbs.                           6 ft. 02 in.            147 lbs. to 204 lbs.
5 ft. 5 in.        111 lbs. to 150 lbs.                           6 ft. 03 in.            151 lbs. to 210 lbs.
5 ft. 6 in.        115 lbs. to 156 lbs.                           6 ft. 04 in.            155 lbs. to 216 lbs.
5 ft. 7 in.        119 lbs. to 162 lbs.                           6 ft. 05 in.            159 lbs. to 222 lbs.
5 ft. 8 in.        121 lbs. to 168 lbs.                           6 ft. 06 in.            163 lbs. to 228 lbs.
5 ft. 9 in.        127 lbs. to 174 lbs.                           6 ft. 07 in.            167 lbs. to 234 lbs.


What do I do if I want to be in a specialized unit like detectives, canine detail, or helicopters?

You need to graduate from at least the Level II academy, be assigned to a patrol station, and get patrol qualified.  Once you’re patrol qualified you can contact the specialized units you might be interested in about a possible transfer.


I was a reserve in another county, do I need to go through the Sheriff’s academy?

If you still hold an active California POST reserve certificate you will need to go through some processing and a background update – but in most cases this is a relatively brief, simple procedure.


I was a reserve in another state, do I need to go through the Sheriff’s academy?

Out of state applicants will be considered individually based on the length of training, time in the field and other factors.  However, you must still meet the California POST requirements, and will probably need a Basic Course Waiver.  more information is available at the California POST website.


Is a prior drug use a disqualifier?

Each application is individually judged and based on a number of factors.  Some past drug use may not necessarily be automatically disqualifying.  However, failure to disclose past drug useage is a disqualifier.


Can I pick the station where I want to work?



After I start at one station, can I transfer to another?

Yes, you can request the change; requests are approved in most cases.


Once I go to patrol, how many hours do I have to put in every month?

20 hours per month minimum is normally required of all reserves, wherever you are assigned in the department.


If I’m thinking of a career in law enforcement, should I become a reserve first?

Some people prefer to hold on to their present jobs and go through the Reserve Academy to see how much they’re going to enjoy law enforcement; whether they want to do it on a part-time basis or whether they want to make a career out of it.  But for those who already know they would like to be full-time peace officers, applying directly to the regular academy is the best way to go.


How old do I have to be?                                                          

20 years old at the time you are accepted.


Do I have to be a high school graduate?                                          

You must be a high school graduate or have a G.E.D.


Can a resident alien apply?                                                   

You must be an American citizen, by birth or naturalized.


If I have a felony arrest but no conviction, can I be a Reserve Deputy Sheriff?

The totality of the circumstances will be evaluated by your background investigator.  You should explain the situation fully in your application; use extra pages if necessary.


What does a former Reserve Officer have to do to become a Reserve again?

Individuals who were previously Level I or II reserve officers may accept an appointment at the same or lower level, without meeting current training standards, if their break in service is less than three years.  If the individual has more than a three-year break in service, he or she must meet current training standards.

Former Level III rserve officers must meet current entry-level training requirements regardless of the length of th ebreak in service.


What is the difference between designated and non-designated Level I Reserve Officer?

The authority of a “designated” Level I reserve includes the full powers and duties of a peace officer as provided by a Penal Code section 830.1.  A Level I reserve is “designated” by authority of a city ordinance or a county Resolution. [Penal Code section 830.6(a)(2)]

The authority of of a “non-designated” Level I reserve shall extend only for the duration of the assignment to specific police functions. [Penal Code section 830.6(a)(1)]