What is a South Carolina State Constable?

Modern day State Constables are highly trained, certified, sworn law enforcement professionals who stand ready to be of service to local Law Enforcement Agencies, and to the State of South Carolina in a moments notice. State Constables are commissioned by the Governor of South Carolina, regulated by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), and empowered with statewide authority or jurisdiction.

The South Carolina State Constable serves as an additional resource to assist local law enforcement agencies providing a valuable resource to law enforcement agencies anywhere in the state. Assistance to these agencies provides the law enforcement communities in South Carolina with a flexible work force that can fill gaps caused by unexpected events such as natural disasters and other state wide or local emergencies. Local law enforcement agencies also benefit by using Constables periodically during IMG_0002special events and community activities that require a larger than available law enforcement staff. Finally, the Officers on the street benefits by using Constables on routine patrol, changing a one man unit to a two man unit, increasing Officer safety, and giving the Patrol Officer immediate access to back up and a second set of eye.

A State Constable is required under South Carolina law to preserve and protect the citizens of South Carolina according to the laws of the state, and is required to respond to any actions that result in a crime.

The South Carolina State Constables serve their community without pay or compensation. The opportunity to serve, and a commitment to law enforcement is their only reward.


What attributes does it takes to be a South Carolina State Constable?

 Commitment:   Commitment is the essential element on the road to becoming a South Carolina State Constable. A Constable must be committed to being a part of a professional and progressive branch of law enforcement. You must not have an attitude of convenient service. You cannot just serve when the notion strikes. You must have an attitude for service when you are needed. You may be needed to assist within you community at night, on weekends, holidays, or when it is cold or raining. Constable 1Constable must be committed to Training, Service, the Law enforcement agencies we assist, the officers we work with, and the community we serve.

Training: State Constables must attend SLED mandated training. For the Basic Constable training consist of 82 plus hours of Basic Constable Training at a local States Technical College and weapon qualification. All state constables are required to attend annual recertification training, which includes, Legal Updates, Criminal Domestic Violence Update, Blood borne Pathogens, Policy and Procedures, and Weapon Qualifications to maintain their certification. State Constables in our association also receive additional training form local Law Enforcement agencies at our regularly monthly membership meetings. All training for Constables is at the Constable’s own expense.

Professionalism: South Carolina State Constables are certified sworn law enforcement officers and therefore expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, on and off duty, not to bring discredit to themselves, their commission, the Governor of South Carolina, the State of South Carolina, SLED, the local law enforcement agencies and or the communities in which we serve.

Accountability: A State Constable is accountable for their actions to the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division. They are required to submit quarterly reports of their activities, and to justify any actions taken within that quarter. The Constable must always be ready and able to justify their worthiness to SLED, in order to retain their commission.

Commitment, Training, Professionalism, and Accountability combined with the personal attributes to pass the strict scrutiny of SLED and a thorough background investigation, are among the basic attributes required to be certified as a Constable.


What are the basic steps required to become a South Carolina State Constable?

 There are several basic steps that must be taken in order to set the process in motion.

Step #1: You must make application to the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) to become a Constable. The application can be printed from SLED’s web sight at: www.sled.sc.gov/Constables.aspx?MenuID=Constables.

Items required for submission with your completed application include;

1) A signed and notarized Authorization for Release of records.

2) A signed and notarized Judgment Statement Affidavit.

3) A signed and notarized Possession of Firearms / Ammunition Affidavit.

4) A completed State Constable Medical History and State Constable Medical Examination signed by your physician.

5) A signed and notarized Oath of Office.

6) Two complete sets of legible fingerprints by a local Law Enforcement Agency.

7) A current photograph.

8) A typed statement stating the reason you are requesting a commission as a State Constable.

9) Three letters of recommendation from persons other then those listed as personal references on your application.

10) A copy of your high school diploma or equivalency certificate.

11) A copy of your DD-214 if you were in the military.

The application fees vary for the type of Constable commission you require. These fees are non refundable, and must be made by certified funds to SLED, and submitted along with your completed application. The commissions and fees are as followed:

Group I Constable     State Constable for Government Entities   No Fee
Group II Constable    Retired Police Officer                                 No Fee
Group III Constable  State Constable Auxiliary                            $50.00

It takes approximately 90 days for SLED to complete a thorough background investigation and process the application for approval. If the application is approved, you will be issued a letter from SLED entitled “Approval for Training”. This letter must be presented at the next available training class for the type of Constable for which you have applied. This leads to Step #2.


Step #2: You must attend Basic Constable Training. You must attend Basic Constable Training for the type of Constable commission for which you have applied. Group I Constables must attend the S.C. Criminal Justice Academy to receive training. Group II Constable being retired police officer is exempt from additional training. Group III Constables must complete Basic Constable training at a South Carolina Technical College approved by the S.C. Law Enforcement Training Counsel. Training for Group III Constable consists of over 82 hours of classroom instruction, including 12 hours of firearm training, culminating in firearms qualification.   After successful completion of the Basic Constable Course and Firearms Qualification, Constable Candidates will then be scheduled to take the written exam for Basic Constable. This leads to step #3.


Step #3: You must pass the Basic Constable Exam. After successful completion of the Basic Constable Course and Firearms Qualification, the Technical College you attended will send your certificate of completion and firearms qualification to the South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division. SLED will request that the South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy schedule a Basic Constable exam for the Constable Candidates. The exam will be scheduled several weeks after you have completed your training, and will be given at the SC Criminal Justice Academy in Columbia, South Carolina. You will receive a letter from SLED that will include the date of the exam and other important instructions for exam day. Following successful competition of the exam, you will be commissioned by the Governor of South Carolina as a South Carolina State Constable.

We thank you for your interest in the South Carolina State Constable Program. Further information may be obtained by calling the South Carolina State Constable Alliance or the South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division (SLED).