New Armed Security Officer Pennsylvania – Detailed Info & Fees

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New Armed Security Guard Requirements in Pennsylvania

  • PA Security Guard License Type: Lethal Weapons Act 235 Card
  • PA Security Guard License Length: 5 years
  • PA Security Guard Licensing Authority: Lethal Weapons Unit of the PA State Police
  • PA Security Guard Licensing Code: Chapter 21: ADMINISTRATION OF THE LETHAL WEAPONS TRAINING PROGRAM
  • PA Security Guard Licensing Website: Lethal Weapons Department
  • PA Security Guard Licensing Phone Number: 717-346-4087
  • PA Security Guard Licensing Address: 8002 Bretz Drive, Harrisburg, PA 17112-9748
  • PA Security Guard Fingerprinting & Background Fees: $0 included in application fee
  • PA Security Guard Application Fee: $75.50
  • PA Security Guard Application Fee Payment: Money Order, Certified Check, or Cashier’s Check payable to “The Commonwealth of PA” No personal or company checks.
  • PA Security Guard Psychological Exam Fee: Unknown. Varies by psychologist.
  • PA Security Guard Courses before You Apply for a Security Officer License: 40 hours (Cost varies, $300 typical)
  • PA Security Guard Minimum Age: 18

Your Act 235 card doesn’t allow to be an armed bodyguard, doorman, etc within the premises of a location that holds, sells, or delivers any alcoholic beverage to the public.

Your Act 235 card is not a permit to carry a concealed weapon.

Armed Security Guard Application Process

This procedure is for non-police officer applicants to get their armed security license under Act 235 Certification in PA.

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  1. Complete the Basic Application for Agent Certification (SP 8- 200).
  2. Get your Physical Evaluation (SP8-200A).
  3. Get your  Psychological Evaluation (SP8-200B).
  4. Take your completed applications to any Pennsylvania State Police Station, except the Turnpike Stations.
  5. Present proof of your age and identity. If you’re not a resident of PA and don’t have a PA Drivers License or Photo ID from the Department of Transportation, submit two recent color photographs approximately 1 ¼ “ by 1 ¼ in size, full face and measure (from the top of the head to the point of the chin, without a hat). If you’re a PA resident, you don’t need to submit photos with your application.
  6. The police will take your fingerprints. Fingerprints may be taken via LiveScan OR hard copies (one blue and white FBI card, and one green and white PSP card).
  7. The Pennsylvania State Police station forwards to Lethal Weapons Department all your completed forms.
  8. If you pass your background check and the Lethal Weapons Department approval, you will receive an approval letter from them. This could take 2-3 months.
  9. Complete the required security guard training to get your training certificate.
  10. Submit an additional certification fee of $30.00 along with your successful completion of training certificate. The $30 fee must be by certified check, cashier’s check, or money order payable to the “Commonwealth of PA.” Usually the school you take your training at will submit these for you.
  11. In about 4 weeks, you’ll receive your license card. You can check your application status online.

Armed Security Guard Application Questions – Reasons for License Denial

The application to be an armed guard in PA has a lot of YES/NO questions regarding your criminal history. While the application doesn’t say you’ll be denied your license if you answer YES to any of these questions, you most certainly will be denied your license because of it. If you can answer YES to any of these questions, you might want to ask a security guard company or the State Police if you’d be denied your license before you spend the money to apply.

  • Have you ever been convicted of a crime enumerated in section 6105(b)
    • prohibited offensive weapons.
    • corrupt organizations
    • possession of weapon on school property
    • murder
    • voluntary manslaughter
    • involuntary manslaughter, if the offense is based on the reckless use of a firearm
    • §aggravated assault
    • assault by prisoner
    • assault by life prisoner
    • harassment and stalking, if the offense relates to stalking
    • kidnapping
    • unlawful restraint
    • luring a child into a motor vehicle
    • rape
    • involuntary deviate sexual intercourse
    • aggravated indecent assault
    • arson and related offenses
    • causing or risking catastrophe
    • burglary
    • criminal trespass, if the offense is graded a felony of the second degree or higher
    • robbery
    • robbery of motor vehicle
    • theft by unlawful taking or disposition, upon conviction of the second felony offense
    • heft by extortion, when the offense is accompanied by threats of violence
    • receiving stolen property, upon conviction of the second felony offense
    • impersonating a public servant, if the person is impersonating a law enforcement officer
    • intimidation of witnesses or victims
    • retaliation against witness or victim
    • escape weapons or implements for escape
    • riot, if the offense relates to a firearm or other deadly weapon
    • prohibiting of paramilitary training
    • possession of firearm by minor
    • corruption of minors
    • sale or lease of weapons and explosives
    • Any offense equivalent to any of the above-enumerated offenses under the prior laws of this commonwealth, or any offense equivalent to any of the above-enumerated offenses under the commonwealth.
  • Are you now charged with, or have you ever been convicted of a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year? (this does not include federal or state offenses pertaining to antitrust, unfair trade practices, restraints of trade, or regulation of business; or state offenses classified as misdemeanors and punishable by a term of imprisonment not to exceed two years.)
  • Have you ever been convicted of an offense under the act of april 14, 1972 (p.l. 233, no. 64), known as the controlled substance, drug, device and cosmetic act?
  • Are you an individual who is not of sound mind or who has ever been committed to a mental institution?
  • Are you a United States citizen?
  • If no, enter immigration identification number
  • Are you an individual who has been discharged from the armed forces of the United States under dishonorable conditions?
  • Is your character and reputation such that you would be likely to act in a manner dangerous to public safety?
  • Are you a habitual drunkard?
  • Have you ever been convicted of a crime of violence in the commonwealth of Pennsylvania or  elsewhere?

Are you a person who?

  • Is a fugitive from justice?
  • Has been convicted of an offense under the act of april 14, 1972 (p.l. 233, no. 64), known as the controlled substance drug, device and cosmetic act, that may be punishable by a term of imprisonment exceeding two years?
  • Has been convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol or controlled substance as provided in title 75, vehicle code, sections 3731 and/or 3802 (relating to driving under the influence of alcohol or controlled substance) on three or more separate occasions within a five-year period?
  • Has been adjudicated as an incompetent or who has been involuntarily committed to a mental institution for inpatient care and treatment under section 302, 303, or 304 of the provisions of the act of july 9, 1976 (p.l. 817, no. 143), known as the mental health procedures act?
  • Being an alien, is illegally or unlawfully in the United States?
  • Is the subject of an active protection from abuse order issued pursuant to 23 pa.c.s. section 6108 (relating to relief), which order provides for the confiscation of firearms during the period of time the order is in effect. This prohibition shall terminate upon the expiration or vacation of an active protection from abuse order or portion thereof relating to the confiscation of firearms?
  • Was adjudicated delinquent by a court pursuant to 42 pa.c.s. section 6341 (relating to adjudication) or under any equivalent federal statute or statute of any other state as a result of conduct which if committed by an adult would constitute:
    • robbery
    • robbery of motor vehicle
    • burglary
    • murder
    • voluntary manslaughter
    • assault by prisoner
    • assault by life prisoner
    • kidnapping
    • rape
    • involuntary deviate sexual intercourse
    • aggravated indecent assault
    • arson and related offenses
    • theft by extortion, when the offense is accompanied by threats of violence
  • Was adjudicated delinquent by a court pursuant to 42 pa.c.s. section 6341 or under any equivalent federal statute or statute of any other state as a result of conduct which if committed by an adult would constitute an offense enumerated in section 6105(b)? (see above.) The prohibition last for 15 years after the last application delinquent adjudication or upon the person reaching the age of 30, whichever is earlier.

Psychological Fitness Exam

In order to become an armed security guard in PA, you need to get and pass a psychological exam by a psychologist, who is licensed by a State Board of Psychologist Examiners. You have to pay for this exam. Your examination form must be forwarded by the examining physician to the state police lethal weapons department within 15 days of the date of examination, even if you are found unfit to carry a weapon.

This exam determines your psychological fitness to appropriately handle a lethal weapon. A lethal weapon includes, but is not limited to, a firearm, nightstick, billy club, or other weapon calculated to produce serious bodily harm or death. As an armed security guard you have a position of public/private trust and may be required to exercise significant physical strength and undergo high emotional stress. Your examining psychologist  comments on your social comprehension, judgment, impulse control, potential for violence, or any psychological trait that might render you psychologically at risk to handle a lethal weapon.

The psychological fitness exam includes:

  • Interview and History: The psychologist personally interviews you in regards to your personal, educational, employment, and criminal history.
  • Personality Test:  You must take a current standard form of the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI) as administered by the licensed psychologist or paraprofessional employed by and under the direct control and supervision of the licensed psychologist. These test results are reported to the PA State Police’s Lethal Weapons Department.
  • Other Tests:  If a licensed psychologist is unable to certify your psychological capability or risk to exercise appropriate judgment, and restraint in the handling of a lethal weapon at this time, after conducting the aforesaid test, the psychologist can personally employ whatever other psychological measuring instrument(s) and/or technique(s) deemed necessary to form their professional opinion.

Armed Security Guard Training Requirements in PA

You have to take 40 hours of training to meet Act 235 requirements. You should only take this training after your armed security guard application is approved.

General Principles

  • Legal Authority
  • Constitutional Restrictions
  • Principles of Justification
  • Pennsylvania Crime Codes
  • Limited Authority
  • Incident Investigation & Reporting
  • Testifying in Court

 Skills Training

  • Armed & Unarmed Defense
  • Disarming Techniques
  • Come Along and Restraining Holds
  • Use of Lethal Weapons Other Than Firearms
  • Handcuffing, Searching & Securing a Prisoner

Firearms Module

  • Introduction to Firearms
  • Introduction to Handgun Combat Shooting
  • Introduction to Shotguns
  • Handgun Familiarization Firing
  • Handgun Qualification
  • Shotgun Familiarization Firing

 

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Comments 3

  1. Can I go to any psychologist or are there specific ones I need to go to for ACT 235 application? When I have called some locally they don’t know what I am talking about. Can you give me some direction as to where to fine one in Pittsburgh area?

    Thank you.

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