Police Departments Police Test Study Guide

Top 10 Largest Police Departments in the United States!

Nov 28th, 2019
largest police departments in the united states

Largest US Police Departments

There are three major branches of the criminal justice system in the United States:

  • Courts – 80% of cases are civil, whereas 20% of cases are criminal
  • Corrections – supervision, treatment, and punishment of criminals
  • Law enforcement – officers that uphold the law in society

There are almost 18,000 police departments in the United States, all of which play a central role in investigating suspicious activity, arresting suspects believed to have committed crime, and prosecuting those found guilty of those crimes. Of course, law enforcement officer duties are not limited to this. Officers are also equipped with the skills necessary to:

  • act as first responders to emergency situations
  • secure threats – active and potential – to public safety
  • protect national infrastructure
  • protection of public officials

Some police departments are local, small, but well-organized with a considerable level of community involvement – such as Corvallis Police Department in Oregon – whereas other departments, such as New York City Police Department – are broader, deeper and are far more multifaceted and layered. The organizational structure among departments is therefore often very different and with it, the implementation of law enforcement itself.

Largest Police Departments in United States

These are the largest law enforcement agencies in the United States, as of 2023.

Police Department Police Officers on Duty (approx.)
New York Police Department 36,000
Chicago Police Department 13,500
Los Angeles Police Department 10,000
Los Angeles County Sheriffs Department 9,500
California Highway Patrol 7,200
Philadelphia Police Department 6,600
Cook County Sheriff’s Office 5,600
Houston Police Department 5,000
New York State Police 4,500
Pennsylvania State Police 4,400

Statistics Worth Knowing

Here are some other police department statistics worth knowing.

Number About
18,000 The number of police agencies in the United States.
790,000 Total workforce working in US law enforcement.
39 Average age of a worker within that workforce.
6.98% Estimated job growth rate over the next decade.
$66,691 Average salary for a police officer.
$67,323 Average male salary for a police officer.
$59,671 Average female salary for a police officer.
86.2% Percentage of the workforce who are male.

You May Also Like


Join the 89,561 Candidates

We helped pass the police exam!

Our course is tailored for the needs and demands of the 2024 police exam;
the complete online test preparation product tailored for police officer, sheriff deputy, correctional officer, and state trooper applicants.

Choose Your State

Select Your Agency

Choose Your State

Select Your Agency

96% exam success rate with our program

96% exam success rate with our program.

100% moneyback guarantee.

Fail your exam? We offer a 100% moneyback guarantee.