For the purposes of this article, the term "paid police department" shall be taken to mean only a municipal police department maintained and paid for out of public funds and whose employees are paid on a full-time basis out of public funds. The term shall not be taken to mean a department whose employees are paid nominal salaries or wages or are only paid for services actually rendered on an hourly basis.
It shall be the duty of the mayor and police officers of every municipality and any municipal sergeant to aid in the enforcement of the criminal laws of the state within the municipality, independently of any charter provision or any ordinance or lack of an ordinance with respect thereto, and to cause the arrest of or arrest any offender and take him before a magistrate to be dealt with according to the law. Failure on the part of any such official or officer to discharge any duty imposed by the provisions of this section shall be deemed official misconduct for which he may be removed from office. Any such official or officer shall have the same authority to execute a warrant issued by a magistrate, and the same authority to arrest without a warrant for offenses committed in his presence, as a deputy sheriff.
No officer or member of the police force or department of a municipality may aid or assist either party in any labor trouble or dispute between employer and employee. They shall in such cases see that the statutes and laws of this state and municipal ordinances are enforced in a legal way and manner. Nor shall he or she engage in off-duty police work for any party engaged in or involved in such labor dispute or trouble between employer and employee.
The chief of police shall be charged with the keeping and security of the jail and at any time that one or more prisoners are being held in the jail, he shall require that the jail be attended by a police officer or other responsible person.
Each police matron shall have, subject to the general control of the head of the police department, the entire care and control of all women under arrest in the police station for which she serves, and she may, at any time, call upon any police officer connected with such police station for assistance.
Whenever a woman is arrested and taken to a police station to which a matron is attached and when a matron is not present, it shall be the duty of the officer in charge of such police station to cause a matron to be immediately summoned, and it shall be the duty of the police matron to hold herself in readiness at all hours of the day and night to answer any and all calls from such police station whenever and so long as any woman is or remains confined therein.
The police matron herein provided for shall attend all sessions of the mayor's court, police court or municipal court, at any and all times, when any women is to be there arraigned, and the police matron shall have charge of all women there in attendance awaiting trial or awaiting transfer to any other place of detention.
In every station to which a police matron is attached, sufficient and proper accommodations shall be provided by those having charge of the police and fiscal affairs of the city, for all women confined therein, under arrest, and in case such accommodations shall be insufficient and improper, the matron shall notify the mayor, and it shall be the duty of the mayor promptly to lay the matter before the governing body and it shall be the duty of such governing body to provide, at the expense of the city, all such sufficient and proper accommodations.
(b) Parking enforcement officers shall:
(1) Be in uniform;
(2) Display a badge or other sign of authority; and
(3) Serve at the will and pleasure of their employer.
(c) The governing body of the municipality may require the parking enforcement officers to give a surety bond, payable to the municipality. The governing body shall set the amount of the bond conditioned for the faithful performance of their duties. Nothing in this section may be construed to mean that parking enforcement officers come within the civil service provisions of this article or the policemen's pension and relief fund provisions of article twenty-two of this chapter.
§8-14-6. Qualifications for appointment or promotion to positions
in certain paid police departments to be ascertained by
examination; provisions exclusive as to appointments,
(a) All appointments and promotions to all positions in all paid police departments of Class I and Class II cities shall be made only according to qualifications and fitness to be ascertained by examinations, which, so far as practicable, shall be competitive, as hereinafter provided.
(b) No individual, except the chief or deputy chiefs of police, if the position of deputy chief of police has been previously created by the city council of that Class I or Class II city, may be appointed, promoted, reinstated, removed, discharged, suspended or reduced in rank or pay as a paid member of a paid police department, regardless of rank or position, of any Class I or Class II city in any manner or by any means other than those prescribed in the following sections of this article: Provided, That an individual appointed chief or deputy chief of police who held a position as a member of a paid police department in that police department before the appointment as chief or deputy chief of police shall be reinstated to the officer's previous rank following his or her term as chief or deputy chief of police.
(c) The term "member of a paid police department", whenever used in the following sections of this article, means an individual employed in a paid police department who is clothed with the police power of the state in being authorized to carry deadly weapons, make arrests, enforce traffic and other municipal ordinances, issue summons for violations of traffic and other municipal ordinances, and perform other duties which are within the scope of active, general law enforcement.
(d) The term "appointing officer", as used in the following sections of this article, means the Class I or Class II city officer in whom the power of appointment of members of a paid police department is vested by charter provision or ordinance of the city.
In every Class I and Class II city having a paid police department, there shall be a "Policemen's Civil Service Commission." The commission shall consist of three commissioners, one of whom shall be appointed by the mayor of the city; one of whom shall be appointed by the local fraternal order of police; and the third shall be appointed by the local chamber of commerce, or if there be none, by a local businessmen's association. The individuals appointed commissioners shall be qualified voters of the city for which they are appointed; and at least two of said commissioners shall be individuals in full sympathy with the purposes of the civil service provisions of this article. Not more than two of the said commissioners, at any one time, shall be adherents of the same political party. Of the three original appointments in each city, the first commissioner shall be appointed by the mayor and shall serve for six years from the date of his appointment; the second commissioner shall be appointed by the local fraternal order of police and shall serve for four years from the date of his appointment; and the third commissioner shall be appointed by the local chamber of commerce or local businessmen's association and shall serve for two years from the date of his appointment. In the event there is no local chamber of commerce or local businessmen's association at the time any appointment is to be made by it, such appointment shall be made by the other two commissioners by mutual agreement. After the original appointments, all appointments shall be made for periods of four years each by the appointing authority hereinbefore designated. In the event that any commissioner of said civil service commission shall cease to be a member thereof by virtue of death, final removal or other cause, a new commissioner shall be appointed to fill the unexpired term of said commissioner within ten days after said excommissioner shall have ceased to be a member of said commission. Such appointment shall be made by the officer or body who in the first instance appointed the commissioner who is no longer a member of the commission, except that in the case of a vacancy in an appointment made by the governor, which vacancy occurs after the effective date of this article, the appointment for the unexpired term shall be made by the mayor. Each year the three members of the commission shall, together, elect one of their number to act as president of the commission, who shall serve as president for one year. The mayor may, at any time, remove any commissioner or commissioners for good cause, which shall be stated in writing and made a part of the records of the commission: Provided, That once the mayor has removed any commissioner, the mayor shall within ten days thereafter file in the office of the clerk of the circuit court of the county in which the city or the major portion of the territory thereof is located a petition setting forth in full the reason for said removal and praying for the confirmation by said circuit court of the action of the mayor in so removing the said commissioner. A copy of said petition shall be served upon the commissioner so removed simultaneously with its filing in the office of the clerk of the circuit court and shall have precedence on the docket of said court and shall be heard by said court as soon as practicable upon the request of the removed commissioner or commissioners. All rights herein vested in said circuit court may be exercised by the judge thereof in vacation. In the event that no term of the circuit court is being held at the time of the filing of said petition, and the judge thereof cannot be reached in the county wherein the petition was filed, said petition shall be heard at the next succeeding term of said circuit court, whether regular or special, and the commissioner or commissioners so removed shall remain removed until a hearing is had upon the said petition of the mayor. The court or the judge thereof in vacation shall hear and decide the issues presented by said petition. The mayor or commissioner or commissioners, as the case may be, against whom the decision of the court or the judge thereof in vacation shall be rendered, shall have the right to petition the supreme court of appeals for a review of the decision of the circuit court or the judge thereof in vacation as in other civil cases. In the event that the mayor shall fail to file his petition in the office of the clerk of the circuit court, as hereinbefore provided, within ten days after the removal of said commissioner or commissioners, such commissioner or commissioners shall immediately resume his or their position or positions as a member or members of the policemen's civil service commission.
Any resident of the city shall have the right at any time to file charges against and seek the removal of any member of the policemen's civil service commission of such city. Such charges shall be filed in the form of a petition in the office of the clerk of the circuit court of the county in which the city or the major portion of the territory thereof is located, and a copy of said petition shall be served upon the commissioner or commissioners sought to be removed. Said petition shall be matured for hearing and heard by said circuit court or the judge thereof in vacation in the same manner as civil proceedings in the circuit courts of this state are heard, and the party against whom the circuit court's decision is rendered shall have the right to petition the supreme court of appeals for a review of the action of the circuit court, as in other civil cases.
No commissioner shall hold any other office (other than the office of notary public) under the United States, this state, or any municipality, county or other political subdivision thereof; nor shall any commissioner serve on any political committee or take any active part in the management of any political campaign.
All Class I and Class II cities subject to the civil service provisions of this article are hereby required to appropriate sufficient funds for the purpose of carrying out such provisions.
(1) Prescribe and enforce rules and regulations for carrying into effect the civil service provisions of this article. All rules and regulations so prescribed may, from time to time, be added to, amended or rescinded: Provided, That all rules and regulations shall be approved by the mayor and the governing body before they go into effect, but when so approved shall not be changed or rescinded except by the commission with the approval of the mayor and the governing body: Provided, however, That if the mayor and governing body take no action on a proposed rule and regulation or a proposed change or rescission submitted to them within a period of twenty days from the date of submission, then the same shall become effective as though approved by the mayor and governing body.
(2) Keep minutes of its own proceedings, and records of its examinations and other official actions. All recommendations of applicants for office, received by the said commission or by any officer having authority to make appointments to office, shall be kept and preserved for a period of ten years, and all such records, recommendations of former employees excepted, and all written causes of removal, filed with it, shall, subject to reasonable regulation, be open to public inspection.
(3) Make investigations, either sitting as a body or through a single commissioner, concerning all matters touching the enforcement and effect of the civil service provisions of this article and the rules and regulations prescribed hereunder or concerning the action of any examiner or subordinate of the commission or any individual in the public service with respect to the execution of the civil service provisions of this article; and, in the course of such investigations, each commissioner shall have the power to administer oaths and affirmations, and to take testimony.
(4) Have the power to subpoena and require the attendance of witnesses, and the production thereby of books and papers pertinent to the investigations and inquiries herein authorized, and examine them and such public records as it shall require, in relation to any matter which it has the authority to investigate. The fees of such witnesses for attendance and travel shall be the same as for witnesses before the circuit courts of this state, and shall be paid from the appropriation for the incidental expenses of the commission. All officers in the public service, and their deputies, clerks, subordinates and employees shall attend and testify when required to do so by said commission. Any disobedience to, or neglect of, any subpoena issued by the said commissioners, or any one of them, to any person, shall be held a contempt of court, and shall be punished by the circuit court of the county in which the city or the major portion of the territory thereof is located, or the judge thereof in vacation, as if such subpoena had been issued therefrom. The judge of such court shall, upon the application of any one of said commissioners, in any such case, cause the process of said court to issue to compel such person or persons disobeying or neglecting any such subpoena to appear and to give testimony and produce evidence before the said commissioners, or any one of them, and shall have the power to punish any such contempt.
(5) Make an annual report to the mayor showing its own actions, and its rules and regulations, and all of the exceptions thereto in force, and the practical effects thereof, and any suggestions it may have for the more effectual accomplishment of the purposes of the civil service provisions of this article. Such report shall be made available for public inspection within five days after the same shall have been delivered to the mayor of the city.
(1) The applicant's full name, residence and post-office address;
(2) The applicant's United States citizenship, age and the place and date of the applicant's birth;
(3) The applicant's state of health and the applicant's physical capacity for the public service;
(4) The applicant's business and employments and residences for at least three previous years; and
(5) Other information as may reasonably be required, touching upon the applicant's qualifications and fitness for the public service.
(b) Applications shall be furnished by the commission, without charge. The commission may require, in connection with the application, the certificates of citizens, physicians and others, having pertinent knowledge concerning the applicant, as the good of the service may require.
(c) Notwithstanding the provisions of article five, chapter eleven of this code, a person may not submit an application for original appointment if the person is less than eighteen years of age or more than forty years of age at the date of the individual's application:
(d) Notwithstanding the requirements established in this section, if an applicant formerly served upon the paid police department of the city to which he or she makes application, for a period of more than his or her probationary period, and resigned from the department at a time when there were no charges of misconduct or other misfeasance pending against the applicant, within a period of two years next preceding the date of his or her application, and at the time of his or her application resides within the corporate limits of the city in which the paid police department to which the individual seeks appointment by reinstatement is located, then the individual shall be eligible for appointment by reinstatement in the discretion of the policemen's civil service commission. The applicant may be over the age of forty years. The applicant, providing his or her former term of service so justifies, may be appointed by reinstatement to the paid police department without a competitive examination, but the applicant shall undergo a medical examination. The applicant shall be the lowest in rank in the department next above the probationers of the department.
Adequate public notice of the date, time and place of every competitive examination together with information as to the kind of position to be filled, shall be given at least one week prior to such competitive examination. The said commission shall adopt reasonable rules and regulations for permitting the presence of representatives of the press at any such competitive examination. The commission shall post, in a public place at its office, the eligible list, containing the names and grades of those who have passed such competitive examinations for positions in the paid police department, and shall indicate thereon such appointments as may be made from said list.
All applicants for appointment or promotion to any position in a paid police department of a Class I or Class II city who have passed the competitive examination specified above shall, before being appointed or promoted, undergo a medical examination which shall be conducted under the supervision of a board composed of two doctors of medicine appointed for such purpose by the appointing officer of the city. Such board must certify that an applicant is free from any bodily or mental defects, deformity or diseases which might incapacitate him from the performance of the duties of the position desired and is physically fit to perform such duties before said applicant shall be appointed or promoted to any position. Notwithstanding the first sentence of this paragraph, in the event the commission deems it expedient, the medical examination may be given prior to the competitive examination, and if the medical examination is not passed as aforesaid, the applicant shall not be admitted to the competitive examination.
(b) If any applicant feels aggrieved by the answers and/or scores received on a promotional competitive examination, the commission shall, at the request of such applicant made within five days as calculated above, appoint a date, time and place for a public hearing, at which time such applicant may appear, with or without counsel. The commission shall review all parts of the competitive examination questions, answers and scores of the aggrieved applicant, and testimony shall be taken.
The commission shall subpoena, at the expense of the applicant, any competent witnesses requested by such applicant.
(c) After such review, the commission shall render a decision either in favor of the applicant, and therefore adjust the certified eligibility list to provide for such applicant's adjusted score, or the commission shall rule that the applicant's prior score should remain unchanged. Any decision rendered by the commission under this section shall be in writing and shall set forth findings of fact and conclusions of law relied upon to reach such decision.
(d) The commission shall not certify a list of eligibles after the completion of a competitive promotional examination until all applicants for such position have exhausted the procedures before the commission set forth in this section.
(e) If any applicant is aggrieved by a decision rendered by the commission under this section, such applicant may, within twenty days of the date of the commission's decision, seek judicial review thereof in the circuit court of the county wherein such municipality is located. Nothing in this section shall be construed as depriving such applicant of the right to seek a writ of mandamus to the appropriate court within the time specified in this subsection.
If any applicant feels aggrieved by the action of the commission in refusing to examine him, or after examination in refusing to certify him as eligible, the commission shall, at the request of such applicant, appoint a date, time and place for a public hearing; at which time such applicant may appear, by himself or counsel, or both, and the commission shall then review its refusal to make such examination or certification, and testimony shall be taken. The commission shall subpoena, at the expense of the applicant, any competent witnesses requested by him. After such review, the commission shall file in its records the testimony taken and shall again make a decision, which decision shall be final and not subject to judicial review, but under no circumstances shall the provisions of this article be construed, in the case of a refusal to examine an applicant for promotion or to certify an applicant as eligible for promotion, as depriving such applicant of his right to seek a writ of mandamus, if the application for such writ is made within twenty days from the date of the decision refusing to examine or to certify him as eligible for promotion.
(b) Promotions shall be based upon experience and by written competitive examinations to be provided by the Policemen's Civil Service Commission: Provided, That except for the chief or deputy chiefs of police, if the position of deputy chief of police has been previously created by the city council of that Class I or Class II city, no individual is eligible for promotion from the lower grade to the next higher grade until the individual has completed at least two years of continuous service in the next lower grade in the department immediately prior to the examination: Provided, however, That notwithstanding the provisions of section six of this article, any member of a paid police department of a Class I or Class II city now occupying the office of chief or deputy chief of police of that paid police department, or hereafter appointed to the office of chief or deputy chief of police, except as hereinafter provided in this section, is entitled to all of the rights and benefits of the civil service provisions of this article, except that he or she may be removed from the office of chief or deputy chief of police without cause, and the time spent by the member in the office of chief or deputy chief of police shall be added to the time served by the member during the entire time he or she was a member of that paid police department prior to his or her appointment as chief or deputy chief of police, and shall in all cases of removal, except for removal for good cause, retain the regular rank within that paid police department which he or she held at the time of his or her appointment to the office of chief or deputy chief of police or which he or she has attained during his or her term of service as chief or deputy chief of police.
(c) The provisions of this section apply and inure to the benefit of all individuals who have ever been subject to the provisions of this article. The commission may determine in each instance whether an increase in salary constitutes a promotion.
(1) Solicit any assessment, subscription or contribution for any political party, committee or candidate from any person who is a member or employee of the municipality by which they are employed;
(2) Use any official authority or influence, including, but not limited to, the wearing by a municipal police officer of his or her uniform for the purpose of interfering with or affecting the nomination, election or defeat of any candidate or the passage or defeat of any ballot issue: Provided, That this subdivision shall not be construed to prohibit any municipal police officer from casting his or her vote at any election while wearing his or her uniform;
(3) Coerce or command anyone to pay, lend or contribute anything of value to a party, committee, organization, agency or person for the nomination, election or defeat of a ballot issue; or
(4) Be a candidate for or hold any other public office in the municipality in which he or she is employed: Provided, That any municipal police officer that is subject to the provisions of 5 U.S.C. §1501, et seq., may not be a candidate for elective office.
(b) Other types of partisan or nonpartisan political activities not inconsistent with the provisions of subsection (a) of this section are permissible political activities for municipal police officers.
(c) No person may be appointed or promoted to or demoted or dismissed from any position held by a municipal police officer or in any way favored or discriminated against because of his or her engagement in any political activities authorized by the provisions of this section. Any elected or appointed official who violates the provisions of this subsection is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by the penalties contained in section twenty-six, article fifteen of this chapter.
(d) Any member of any such paid police department violating the provisions of this section shall have his appointment vacated and he shall be removed, in accordance with the pertinent provisions of this section.
(e) Any three residents of any such city may file their written petition with the policemen's civil service commission thereof setting out therein the grounds upon which a member of the paid police department of such city should be removed for a violation of subsection (a) of this section. Notice of the filing of such petition shall be given by said commission to the accused member, which notice shall require the said member to file a written answer to the charges set out in the petition within thirty days of the date of said notice. The said petition and answer thereto, if any, shall be entered upon the records of the commission. If such answer is not filed within the time stated, or any extension thereof for cause which in the discretion of the commission may be granted, an order shall be entered by the commission declaring the appointment of said member vacated; if such answer is filed within the time stated, or any extension thereof for cause which in the discretion of the commission may be granted, the accused member may demand within such period a public hearing on the charges, or the commission may, in its discretion and without demand therefor, set a time for a public hearing on said charges, which hearing shall be within thirty days of the filing of said answer, subject, however, to any continuances which may in the discretion of the commission be granted. A written record of all testimony taken at such hearing shall be kept and preserved by the commission, which record shall be sealed and not be open to public inspection, if no appeal be taken from the action of the commission. The commission at the conclusion of the hearing, or as soon thereafter as possible, shall enter an order sustaining, in whole or in part, the charges made or shall dismiss the charges as unfounded. In the event the charges are sustained in whole or in part, the order shall also declare the appointment of said member to be vacated and thereupon the proper municipal authorities shall immediately remove said member from the police force and from the payroll of said city. Notice of the action of the commission shall be given by registered letter to the mayor and chief of police of the city; and for failure to immediately comply with the order of the commission such officer or officers shall be punished for contempt, upon application of the commission to the circuit court of the county in which the city or the major portion of the territory thereof is located.
(f) An appeal from the ruling of the commission may be had in the same manner and within the same time as specified in section twenty of this article for an appeal from a ruling of a commission after hearing held in accordance with the provisions of said section.
(b) In the event the commission sustains the action of the removing officer, the member has an immediate right of appeal to the circuit court of the county wherein the city or the major portion of the territory thereof is located. In the event that the commission reinstates the member, the removing officer has an immediate right of appeal to the circuit court. In the event either the removing officer or the member objects to the amount of the attorney fees awarded to the member, the objecting party has an immediate right of appeal to the circuit court. Any appeal must be taken within ninety days from the date of entry by the commission of its final order. Upon an appeal being taken and docketed with the clerk of the circuit court of the county, the circuit court shall proceed to hear the appeal upon the original record made before the commission and no additional proof may be permitted to be introduced. The circuit court's decision is final, but the member or removing officer, as the case may be, against whom the decision of the circuit court is rendered has the right to petition the supreme court of appeals for a review of the circuit court's decision as in other civil cases. The member or removing officer also has the right, where appropriate, to seek, in lieu of an appeal, a writ of mandamus. The member, if reinstated or exonerated by the circuit court or by the supreme court of appeals, shall, if represented by legal counsel, be awarded reasonable attorney fees as approved by the court and the fees shall be paid by the governing body.
(c) The removing officer and the member shall at all times, both before the commission and upon appeal, be given the right to employ counsel to represent them.
(d) If for reasons of economy or other reasons it is deemed necessary by any Class I or Class II city to reduce the number of paid members of its paid police department, the city shall follow the procedure set forth in this subsection. The reduction in members of the paid police department of the city shall be effected by suspending the last person or persons, including probationers, who have been appointed to the paid police department. The removal shall be accomplished by suspending the number desired in the inverse order of their appointment: Provided, That in the event the said paid police department is increased in numbers to the strength existing prior to the reduction of members, the members suspended under the terms of this subsection shall be reinstated in the inverse order of their suspension before any new appointments to said paid police department are made.
/ / For Police Civil Service
/ / Against Police Civil Service
If a majority of all of the legal votes cast on this question be against police civil service, then none of the civil service provisions of this article shall apply within such city, town or village. If a majority of all of the legal votes cast on this question be for police civil service, then all of the civil service provisions of this article shall apply within such city, town or village with like effect as if such Class III city or Class IV town or village where a Class I or Class II city: Provided, That all members of the paid police department of such city, town or village who were so employed by such city, town or village on the date of the election and who, as of such date, have had four or more years' service as members of any paid police department (including the years any member occupied the office of chief of any such paid police department) shall be considered to have been appointed as members under the civil service provisions of this article and shall hold their positions as members in accordance therewith. All members of the paid police department of such city, town or village who do not have, as of the date of such election, four or more years' service as members of a paid police department (including the years any member occupied the office of chief of any such paid police department) shall be subject to all examinations provided for in the civil service provisions of this article for members, except that if any such individual has sustained an injury or injuries in the line of duty while in police service, such injury or injuries shall not disqualify such individual under the medical examination required under the civil service provisions of this article.
The provisions of this section shall not apply to any such city, town or village operating under police civil service on the effective date of this article.
Any commissioner or examiner, or any other individual, who shall wilfully, by himself or in cooperation with one or more persons, defeat, deceive or obstruct any individual with respect to his right of examination or registration according to the civil service provisions of this article, or to any rules and regulations prescribed pursuant thereto, or who shall wilfully or corruptly, falsely mark, grade, estimate, or report upon any such examination or proper standing of any individual so examined, registered or certified, pursuant to the civil service provisions of this article, or aid in so doing, or who shall wilfully or corruptly furnish to any individual any special or secret information, for the purpose of either improving or injuring the prospects or chances of appointment or promotion to any position of any individual so examined, registered or certified, or to be so examined, registered or certified, or who shall impersonate any other individual, or permit or aid in any manner any other individual to impersonate him, in connection with any such examination or registration, or application or request to be examined or registered, shall, for each offense, be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor.
Any person convicted of any such misdemeanor offense shall be punished by a fine of not less than fifty dollars, nor more than one thousand dollars, or by imprisonment for a term not exceeding one year, or by both such fine and imprisonment, in the discretion of the court.
The status or tenure of all members of any paid police department subject to the civil service provisions of this article, which members were employed on the effective date of this article, shall not be affected by the enactment of this article, but all such members shall be subject to all of the civil service provisions of this article with like effect as if they had been appointed members hereunder.
When a Class III city which does not have a police civil service system becomes a Class II city for which police civil service is made mandatory by the provisions of this article, all members of the paid police department of such city who were employed by such city on the effective date of the transition of such city to a Class II city and who, as of such date, have had four or more years' service as members of any paid police department (including the years any member occupied the office of chief of any such paid police department) shall be considered to have been appointed as members under the civil service provisions of this article and shall hold their positions as members in accordance therewith. All members of the paid police department of such city who do not have, as of such date, four or more years' service as members of a paid police department (including the years any member occupied the office of chief of any such paid police department) shall be subject to all examinations provided for in the civil service provisions of this article for members, except that if any such individual has sustained an injury or injuries in the line of duty while in police service, such injury or injuries shall not disqualify such individual under the medical examination required under the civil service provisions of this article.
Any police civil service system established in accordance with the provisions of former article five-a of this chapter or this article fourteen shall be or remain mandatory and shall be governed by the provisions of this article fourteen (with like effect, in the case of a Class III city or Class IV town or village, as if such Class III city or Class IV town or village were a Class I or Class II city), and shall not be affected by the transition from one class of municipal corporation to a lower class as specified in section three, article one of this chapter.
(b) Upon retirement, a police officer is entitled to keep, without charge, his or her service weapon after a determination by the chief of police:
(1) That the police officer is retiring honorably with at least twenty years of recognized law-enforcement service; or
(2) That the police officer is retiring with less than twenty years of service and that he or she is totally physically disabled as a result of service as a police officer.
(c) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (b) of this section, the chief of police may not award a service weapon to any police officer who has been declared mentally incompetent by a licensed physician or a court of law, or who, in the opinion of the chief of police, constitutes a danger to any person or the community.
Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2012 1st Special Session