Arizona faces a number of security threats, not least among them drug trafficking, motorcycle gangs, and other forms of organized crime. However with an arsenal of 19,375 federal law enforcement officers working in defense and homeland security protection of the state, one of the most important challenges is that posed by Arizona’s 389-mile-long international border with Mexico, identified as a High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area. Every year Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Officers intercept thousands of people trying to bring hidden aliens, drugs, weapons, and other contraband into Arizona for local and national distribution.
Preparing to make a successful bid for federal law enforcement jobs in Arizona is a multi-year process that begins by researching the required education and training for federal law enforcement careers in the state.
Preparing for Federal Law Enforcement Careers
Because most federal law enforcement jobs in Arizona require a bachelor degree, candidates who start preparing for this trajectory in advance will be well served. What kind of four-year degree to pursue depends on which federal agency a candidate is interested in, and degree programs can range from the natural and social sciences to computers and business. Some of the more common programs include:
- Homeland Security
- Police Science
- Public Administration
- Public Safety
- Crime Scene Investigations
- Emergency Management
What to Expect in a Federal Law Enforcement Career
Answering the question of what to expect from Arizona federal law enforcement careers really depends on which agency a candidate joins. Most agencies have in common that they will collaborate with other law enforcement authorities at all levels of government, although specific roles and actions vary significantly depending on the organization:
- 209 suspects were recently taken into custody when Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Agents recently raided a Phoenix-area car wash chain, resulting in 15 arrests and 40 suspects being processed for immigration violations.
- In a case termed as modern-day slavery, US Marshals and FBI Agents recently raided a Flagstaff bridal shop, arresting the owners on charges of human trafficking. The scheme involved the owners of the shop promising Vietnamese immigrants marriage in the US, who upon arrival were forced for years to work long hours for little pay and endure threats. In a humorous twist, after the raid US Marshals also took over the business-end of the bridal shop, ensuring weddings and proms could go ahead for the most part as planned.
- Sawed-off shotguns, $50,000 cash, improvised explosive devises, and 560 firearms were among the items confiscated by Agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) in Tucson during raids directed against two motorcycle gangs, the Hells Angels and the Red Devils. The raids were the culmination of a two-year undercover investigation conducted by ATF Agents in cooperation with the Phoenix Police Department
Federal Border Security Jobs in Arizona
CBP Officers in cooperation with Border Patrol Agents and Homeland Security Transportation Safety Administration Agents operate 10 ports of entry across Arizona. These dedicated individuals are responsible for inspecting all people and commodities entering the country through their state, and are often make noteworthy discoveries:
- CBP Officers recently referred two border crossers for secondary inspections to find one was transporting 18 pounds of methamphetamine and over two pounds of heroin, while the other was hiding 20 meth packages in modified tires on his vehicle. Together the seizures amounted to over half-a-million dollars in value.
- Three people were recently arrested when they attempted to cross the border into Arizona with a combined total of $1.3 million in hidden hard drugs. In each of the three cases, CBP Canine Units alerted to the possible presence of drugs.
- Border Patrol Agents recently teamed up with officers from CBP’s Office of Air and Marine to mount a mountain rescue of a man who had broken his femur. As it turned out the rescued 40-year-old had crossed into the state illegally from Mexico.
Strategic Locations across Arizona
Federal law enforcement jobs are based out of locations spread across the state. These are intended to distribute resources evenly and provide an emphasis of coverage where needed:
- FBI Field Office in Phoenix at 21711 North 7th Street
- DEA field offices in:
- Phoenix at 3010 North 2nd Street
- Tucson at 6970 South Palo Verde Road
- ATF field offices in:
- Flagstaff at 345 River Run
- Phoenix at 201 East Washington Street
- Tucson at 2255 West Ina Road
- Yuma at 2270 South Ridgeview Drive
- US Secret Service offices in:
- US Marshals offices in:
- 10 CBP Port of Entry
- ICE Phoenix Field Office at 2035 North Central Avenue
- Arizona Department of Homeland Security in Phoenix at 1700 West Washington Street