The United States Marshal Service (USMS) has a strong presence in Florida with three, separate districts: Southern, Middle and Northern. Each district has its own set of USMS operations and field offices, thereby providing the state with coordinated and comprehensive federal law enforcement services.
U.S. Marshal Jobs and Training Requirements in Florida
Individuals who want to learn how to become a U.S. marshal in Florida must be prepared to meet the USMS’s minimum requirements for employment and successfully complete the agency’s pre-employment and training requirements:
Minimum Requirements for Employment – Individuals interested in careers with the U.S. Marshals Service in Florida must ensure they meet the minimum requirements for employment. Specifically, candidates must be United States citizens; they must be between the ages of 21 and 36; and they must possess a valid motor vehicle license.
Further, candidates must meet the education/experience requirements of the GL-7 level, which include possessing one of the following:
- A bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university, with a minimum 3.0 GPA and a minimum 3.5 GPA in all major-related courses; OR
- At least one full year of graduate-level study beyond a bachelor’s degree in a program related to law enforcement, such as criminal justice, sociology, criminology, emergency management, police science, etc.; OR
- At least one full year of specialized experience equivalent to the GL-5 level; work experience must be in the field of law enforcement/criminal investigations; OR
- A combination of approved education and experience
The U.S. Marshals Service does not accept applications throughout the year; instead, applications are accepted and the employment assessment process is active only during an open recruitment period. Open recruitment periods are posted on the USMS website as they are announced.
The Pre-Employment Process – Qualified candidates chosen by the U.S. Marshals Service are required to complete the pre-employment process, which can take between 9 and 12 months to complete:
- Competitive examination
- Background investigation
- Medical evaluation
- Physical fitness test
The Training Process – The USMS training program for new U.S. marshals consists of 17 ½ weeks of basic training that is completed at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center in Glynco, Georgia. Training consists of strenuous physical conditioning and defensive tactics training, as well as training in the following areas:
- Firearms training
- Computer training
- Court security
- Legal training
- Driver training
- Court security
Following training, all trainees must complete a final physical fitness test. Standards for physical fitness vary according to gender and age.
US Marshal Service Districts in Florida
Southern District of Florida – The headquarters of the U.S. Marshals Service, Southern District, is located in Miami, with additional sub-offices located in Fort Pierce, West Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale, and Key West. The Southern District is also home to the Florida/Caribbean Regional Fugitive Task Force and the Fugitive Apprehension Strike Team (FAST), both of which were created to allow the U.S. marshals to coordinate efforts between state and local law enforcement agencies with the common goal of apprehending federal and state fugitives.
The USMS Southern Florida District created the Alien Tracking and Arrest Coalition (ATAC), which a multi-agency effort (with Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the U.S. State Department DSS) to execute foreign arrest warrants issued through INTERPOL.
The Southern Florida District is a participant in the Joint Terrorism Task Force, as well, which includes the FBI, the U.S. Secret Service, the Federal Protective Services, and Miami Dade Police and the U.S. Military. This task force was created as a conduit for sharing intelligence and investigating terrorist leads.
Middle District of Florida – The Middle District of Florida has a number of USMS field offices in:
- Fort Myers
The U.S. Marshals of the Middle District of Florida also oversee a number of task forces, including:
- The Tampa Fugitive Task Force: Created to locate and arrest federal fugitives and assist state and local departments with locating and arresting violent or narcotics-related fugitives
- Northeast Florida Fugitives Apprehension Strike Team (FAST): A U.S. Marshals Service-coordinated High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) task force that is designed to assist other HIDTA initiative at the federal, state and local levels
- Orange County – United States Marshals Felony Squad: A cooperative effort between the USMS and the sheriff’s office; created to identify, locate and arrest any felony fugitive in the Orange County area
- Orlando HIDTA Task Force: A U.S. Marshals Service-led HIDTA task force that was created to assist other HIDTA initiatives in locating and arresting fugitives at the federal, state and local levels
- Fort Myers Fugitive Task Force: A USMS-led task force that was created to locate and arrest violent and narcotics-related fugitives at the federal, state and local levels
Northern District of Florida – U.S. Marshals Service operations in the Northern District of Florida are headquartered in Tallahassee, with additional fugitive task force operations in Pensacola, Gainesville, and Panama City.
The Florida Regional Fugitive Task Forces of the USMS are designed to ensure the apprehension of individuals wanted on state or federal warrants or for felony violations related to: robbery, kidnapping, murder, sexual battery, arson, aggravated child abuse, aggravated battery, and probation violations.