Professional Standards

Professional Standards Division Seal

Portrait of John Coppock
Captain John Coppock

Mission Statement

The Professional Standards Division is committed to providing essential support services to the Sheriff-Coroner Department and it’s personnel by maintaining high standards of ethics and professionalism in the areas of recruitment, selection, personnel records maintenance, labor relations, human resource management and administrative investigation. We pledge to provide these services with integrity, courtesy and operational efficiency.

The Professional Standards Division (PSD) is responsible for providing a myriad of critical services that support the mission and operations of the Sheriff's Department. The units of the Professional Standards Division provide a variety of support services to the other twenty divisions of the Department that include recruiting, pre-employment background investigations, and promotional functions; processing human resource referrals, job classification issues, and receiving discrimination complaints; investigating internal and citizen-generated complaints of alleged misconduct against employees; and providing a host of clerical support and functions that ensure the Department's 4,264 sworn, reserve, and professional staff members are properly uniformed, equipped, and supported in their daily duties. The Professional Standards Division also provides business licensing services and processes and approves the issuance of concealed weapons permits.  

The fifty-four sworn and professional staff members of the Professional Standards Division perform their duties in a collaborative environment. They work diligently with the other divisions along with County, State, and Federal governmental agencies to uphold employment and performance standards that ensure the Sheriff's Department continues to be staffed by the highest caliber of personnel in the law enforcement profession. The division is also responsible for assuring non-discrimination and equal opportunity compliance.


The Recruiting Unit is responsible for identifying and targeting applicant pools to fill the sworn and professional staff vacancies in the Department. Active efforts are undertaken to select the most qualified applicants by administering rigorous selection processes. Advertising and community involvement are cornerstone activities of the Recruiting Unit.

The Orange County Sheriff's Department offers very competitive salary and benefit packages.

  • Deputy Sheriff Trainee -- $4,458 monthly ($53,496 yearly)
  • Deputy Sheriff I -- $5,089 to $6,916 monthly ($61,068 - $82,992 yearly)
  • Deputy Sheriff II -- $5,231 to $7,308 monthly ($62,772 - $87,696 yearly)

The Sheriff's Department Recruiting Unit can be reached at (714) 834-5811, or toll free at 1-877-SHERIFF or by accessing the Department's website at



The Background Unit is responsible for investigating applicants to ensure they meet the high standards of employment maintained by the Sheriff's Department. Detailed investigations are undertaken to scrutinize the past history of applicants to include previous criminal behavior, prior work performance, credit, personal relationships, and driving record. The background investigative process for sworn applicants is comprehensive and includes written and physical agility tests, an oral interview panel, a background interview, and psychological and medical evaluations followed by rigorous instruction at the Sheriff's Training Academy.

Position Control

The Position Control Unit is responsible for the placement of newly hired and promoted employees into one of  170 different job classifications; is responsible for tracking all Department transfers within its 21 Divisions; and generates and disseminates monthly Department-wide vacancy reports to Sheriff's Administration, Financial Services, and all other divisions.

Employee Services

The Employee Services Unit provides on-going career life-cycle support to employees and divisions of the Department by processing a wide range of personnel transactions such as: promotions, merit increases, probation approvals, leave of absences, uniform requests, employment verification, tuition reimbursement, performance evaluations, separations, the maintenance of personnel files, and issuance of identification cards.  This Unit also facilitates new employee sign-ups and orientation, administers the Catastrophic Leave program, and has the pleasure of issuing retirement plaques for eligible employees.

Human Resources

The Human Resources Unit is responsible for conducting Department classification studies, market comparison studies, responding to classification and compensation surveys, and working closely with the various employee associations. Daily, the HR Specialists interact with employees, supervisors and managers assisting with conflict resolution, MOU interpretation and other issues regarding terms and conditions of employment. This is a highly specialized unit that has a broad impact on Department and County business.

Internal Affairs

The Internal Affairs Unit is responsible for conducting investigations of alleged misconduct by department members while ensuring appropriate due process and Peace Officer Bill of Rights assurances are provided. The unit is also charged with overseeing the application process of concealed weapons permits and various business licensing required by County and Contract City ordinance. The department considers its relations with the community to be of paramount importance and encourages citizens to express their opinions regarding the performance, professionalism, and conduct of our employees. Below you will find a copy of our Personnel Complaint Form. Click here to download a copy of the Personnel Complaint Form. Complaints can be mailed to:

Orange County Sheriff's Department
Attn: Internal Affairs
P.O. Box 449
Santa Ana, CA 92702-9951

Yearly Statistic for the Professional Standards Division

  • Background Investigations: 838 in 2009 / 1,581 in 2008 / 1,655 in 2007 
  • Employees Hired: 24 in 2009/183 in 2008 /403 in 2007
  • 100 Deputy Sheriff Trainee & Lateral: 24 in 2009 / 76 in 2008
  • 50 Special Officers: 22 in 2009 / 28 in 2008
  • 99 Professional Staff: 20 in 2009 / 79 in 2008
  • Internal Affairs Complaints and Investigations: 364 in 2009 / 349 in 2008 / 269 in 2007
  • Active CCW Permits: 833 in 2009 / 974 in 2008 / 1,159 in 2007
  • CCW Permit Applications Received: 419 in 2009 / 481 in 2008 / 599 in 2007
  • CCW Permits Issued: 398 in 2009 / 411 in 2008 / 546 in 2007
  • Business Licenses Issued: 492 in 2009 / 554 in 2008 / 561 in 2007
  • Business License Fees Collected: $138,003.00 in 2009 / $152,248.00 in 2008 / $170,775 in 2007


2009 2008 2007
  • 7 Lieutenants
  • 12 Sergeants
  • 7 Investigators
  • 53 Deputy Sheriff II's
  • 103 Professional Staff
  • 2 Assistant Sheriffs
  • 2 Captains
  • 7 Lieutenants
  • 24 Sergeants
  • 29 Investigators
  • 73 Deputy Sheriff II's
  • 227 Professional Staff
  • 1 Undersheriff
  • 2 Assistant Sheriffs
  • 3 Captains
  • 11 Lieutenants
  • 27 Sergeants
  • 20 Investigators
  • 83 Deputy Sheriff II's
  • 186 Professional Staff