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1660-002 1 of 2

Department of Public Safety

Board of Examiners of Constables

The Board of Examiners of Constables was created in 1986 to review the qualifications of persons applying to be a constable. They review applications to determine if candidates meet all the legal requirements and may establish other general qualifications. The Board may conduct investigations to determine the criminal history, character, competency, and integrity of the applicants. Any person with a felony conviction can not be approved, and those with misdemeanor convictions may be disapproved. The original legislation authorized the Governor to appoint constables after they had been recommended by the Board.1 However, since 1990 successful applicants are appointed and commissioned as constables by the Board of Examiners.2 Any person, firm, corporation, civic association, or governmental entity applying to have a constable appointed, must show the Board of Examiners that the appointment is necessary to protect life and property where public law enforcement or police agencies are unable to assist. The Board of Examiners is authorized to establish a reasonable application fee.

The Board of Examiners of Constables has additional duties after a constable is appointed. When a constable’s term of office is nearing expiration, the constable may request that his/her commission be renewed. This request may be approved following a review by the Board. The constable and the individual, firm, corporation, civic association or governmental entity must notify the Board of Examiners if the constable’s employment is terminated. The Board may discharge a constable for just cause before the completion of their term. The Board may require a constable to receive additional training or education as it deems necessary. After appointment, the Board of Examiners determines whether a constable is permitted to carry firearms while on duty as a constable. This determination is based on the constable’s duties and employment. They also establish requirements for firearms training and training in the use of deadly force. The Board is required to approve each constable’s badge. If a badge is used improperly, the violator must notify the Board of Examiners in writing, and the Board determines if the constable should be discharged.

The Board consists of five members: The Superintendent of the Delaware State Police or their designee, Director of Public Safety of the New Castle County Police or their designee, the Attorney General or their designee, a representative from the Chiefs of Police Council, and a representative from the American Society of Industrial Security.

1660-002 2 of 2

Department of Public Safety

Board of Examiners of Constables

1 65 DL, Chap. 433.

2 67 DL, Chap. 351.