Report Ranks Maryland Third Best State To Be A Police Officer

    A study released this week revealed that Maryland is ranked as the third best state to be a law enforcement officer, behind California and Connecticut.

    The report, published by WalletHub, ranked all 50 states and Washington, D.C., based on the region’s opportunity and competition, officer training requirements and job hazards and protections based on data collected from 2018 to 2021.

    During the 2021 legislative session, Maryland made sweeping changes to it’s policing policy. According to WalletHub spokeswoman Diana Polk, the data for this report was collected in July 2020 and is not reflective of Maryland’s new policies, many of which will be enacted over the next several years.

    Several factors were taken into consideration regarding employment opportunity and competition, including the number of officers per capita, police starting salary, median income, income growth, salary growth potential and the projected number of officers per capita for 2028.

    Out of the states surveyed, Maryland scored fifth out of 51 and was ranked second for highest officer median income growth from 2019 to 2020.

    The report also took officer training requirements into consideration, looking at the number of required training hours, whether states allow police to work prior to basic training, college and continued professional education requirements, and whether or not officers are required to undergo mental health, substance abuse, behavioral disorder and de-escalation training.

    Maryland was ranked 21 of 51 for this category.

    Finally, the WalletHub study surveyed officer job hazards and protections across states, looking at the availability of officer disciplinary records; body-worn camera legislation; how use of force incidents are investigated and prosecuted; whether the state has an officer decertification requirement; police deaths per 1,000 people; the number of civilians killed by police per capita; pursuit-related fatalities; the number of assaults against police officers; the violent and property crime rate, and other facotrs.

    Maryland ranked sixth out of 51 for this category.

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    Hannah Gaskill
    Hannah Gaskill received her master’s of journalism degree in December 2019 from the University of Maryland. She previously worked on the print layout design team at The Diamondback, reported on criminal justice in Maryland for Capital News Service and served as a production assistant for The Confluence — the daily news magazine on 90.5 WESA, Pittsburgh’s NPR member station. Gaskill has had bylines in The Baltimore Sun, The Washington Post and The Chicago Tribune, among other publications.Before pursuing journalism, she received her bachelor’s of fine art degree from Carnegie Mellon University in 2016. She grew up in Ocean City.