United States Mint Police Train To Protect People, Critical Assets

November 26, 2014

United States Mint Police badge.
United States Mint Police badge.

Established in 1792, the United States Mint Police is one of the nation’s oldest federal law enforcement agencies. About 300 Mint Police officers ensure secure conditions for 1,800 employees, thousands of visitors, and more than $311 billion in government assets at West Point, New York; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Washington, DC; Fort Knox, Kentucky; Denver, Colorado; and San Francisco, California.

Mint Police officers protect critical assets and infrastructures against threats of violence and crime; enforce federal laws; safeguard employees, visitors and the public trust while proactively managing the changing nature of threats by integrating intelligence, police operations, and procedural and technical security countermeasures.

Paul D. Constable, director/commander of the Mint Police Operations and Training Division, which specifies training for the bureau’s six field sites, said that training enables Mint Police officers to carry out their assigned tasks effectively, safely and efficiently.

“Continuous training affords Mint Police officers the ability to provide professional services in the protection of people, assets and infrastructures,” he said.

The Mint is a participating agency with the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC), which serves as the primary training academy for Mint Police recruits, as well as a primary provider of in-service refresher training and specialized training programs for experienced officers.

The FLETC, a component of the Department of Homeland Security with headquarters at Glynco, Georgia, is an interagency law enforcement training organization for 91 federal agencies in all three branches of government, as well as partner organizations. Since it was established in 1970, approximately 1,000,000 law enforcement officers and agents have been trained there.

Each new officer must complete a basic law enforcement academy at the FLETC immediately upon appointment, except those declared exempt by the chief of the Mint Police, based on having received equivalent law enforcement or criminal investigative training through other venues.

Law enforcement officers use tactics as tools to gain or increase their advantage in a constantly changing and dangerous profession. Skills taught during this training include weapons handling, movements, danger areas, cover management, contact and cover, 360-degree security, cornering, door entry, room clearing, and breaching.

Mint Police leadership said applicants need to be physically and mentally prepared to handle the 12 weeks of training during the Basic Academy at FLETC. Recruits must pass a fitness test with five components: body composition (body fat percentage); agility (negotiating multiple obstacles – timed); flexibility (lower back, legs and shoulders); bench press (one repetition – weighted); and 1.5–mile run (timed).

Training doesn’t stop when recruits graduate from the Basic Academy at FLETC. New officers must complete the five–week field training officer program immediately upon assignment to their respective field sites.

In addition, Mint Police officers are required to complete a minimum of 48 hours of annual training, including weapons qualifications, oleoresin capsicum (pepper) spray, baton, legal updates, use–of–force protocols, safety, search–and–scan procedures, report writing, police authority and jurisdiction, and arrest procedures.

Beyond initial and annual training requirements, all Mint Police officers must complete the 80–hour United States Mint Police In–Service Training program at the FLETC every fifth year of service, at a minimum. All supervisory police officer inspectors and chiefs must attend a management in–service training program every five years.

These extensive training requirements ensure that employees, visitors, and national assets of the United States Mint remain secure under the watchful eyes of Mint Police officers.

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