Police Officer Specialization & Advancement


Special Assignments & Promotion

Tempe PD has numerous opportunities for specialization and advancement to include special assignments and promotion.  In addition to several specialties areas officers may be able to work, those who qualify may promote to the rank of sergeant or beyond. Below are several of the special assignments within Tempe PD. 

 Investigations Division

  • Bomb Squad
  • Canine Unit
  • Detectives - Criminal and Special Investigations 
    • Computer Forensics Unit, Criminal Apprehension Surveillance Team, Document Crimes Unit, Domestic Violence & Assaults Unit, Homicide & Missing Persons Unit, Juvenile Unit, Homeland Defense Unit, Property Crimes Unit, Special Victims Unit and Robbery & Aggravated Assault Unit
  • Special Investigations Units
  • SWAT Team

Organizational Services Division

Patrol Division



Rank Structure

  • Chief
    • Oversees all department operations.
  • Assistant Chief
    • Manages operations of a division, or group of bureaus.
  • Commander
    • Oversees bureau operations. Bureaus have an operational specialty, such as Criminal Investigations. 
  • Lieutenant
    • Supervises a bureau or several units in a bureau. The Patrol Division, for example, has several lieutenants who supervise multiple patrol squads.
  • Sergeant
    • Leads several officers or detectives who are part of a squad or unit such as detectives or patrol officers.
  • Officer or Detective
    • Officers are the most visible people within our community.  Officers carry out a variety of assignments but most patrol our neighborhoods.
    • Detectives are investigators who conduct follow-up investigations to solve crimes and locate criminals who could not be found immediately.