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Community Service Officer Program (CSO)

Community Service Officer Program image


CSO BadgeThe Community Service Officer is a new civilian position in the Police Department. Numerous cities nationwide have utilized Community Service Officers within their Police Departments for many years. In 2010 the City Auditor recommended the Police Department create the position as part of a Civilianization Audit.

The Community Service Officers will be deployed in the field to assist police officers by responding to and investigating lower priority calls for service, so police officers will be available to respond to higher priority emergency calls for service and have more time for proactive enforcement. The Community Service Officers will not perform any enforcement duties, such as issuing traffic or parking citations, towing abandoned vehicles or making arrests. The types of calls the Community Service Officers will respond to and investigate include:

CSO vehicle
  • Burglary – commercial, residential, vehicle
  • Petty theft
  • Grand theft
  • Vehicle theft – initial report and/or recovery
  • Vandalism
  • Non-injury traffic collisions
  • Missing persons
  • Road Hazards
  • Directs and controls crowds and traffic at accidents or special events including setting up cone and/or road flare patterns

If you would like to ask a specific question, go to the Contact link at the bottom of this page then select “Community Service Officers” in the Topic drop-down menu in the resulting form.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What type of training have the CSOs received?
    The CSOs have attended a five-week Academy. During the Academy they had instruction covering a variety of topics including Criminal Law and Investigation, Evidence Collection, Report Writing, Accident Investigation, First Aid/CPR, Vehicle Operations, Interviewing persons, Defensive Tactics, Etc.
  2. How many CSOs does the Police Department employ?
    The City Council has approved the Police Department to hire 28 CSOs.
  3. How are the CSOs deployed?
    The CSOs will be evenly spread throughout the city. There will be seven CSOs assigned to work in each of the four Divisions; Central, Foothill, Southern and Western Divisions.
  4. What days and hours do the CSOs work?
    The CSOs will work Monday through Friday. There will be two shifts; the day shift will work from 8 AM to 4:30 PM. The swing shift will work from 12 PM to 8:30 PM.
  5. What type of uniforms do the CSOs wear?
    The CSOs wear light blue uniform shirts, a badge that says “Community Service Officer”, dark blue pants and a Duty Belt with a Radio, Pepper Spray and a flashlight.
  6. What type of vehicles do the CSOs drive?
    The CSOs will be driving either a full size pickup truck or a small hatchback vehicle. They will be white in color with “Community Service Officer” graphics across the sides and back.


The City of San José is committed to open and honest government and strives to consistently meet the community's expectations by
providing excellent service, in a positive and timely manner, and in the full view of the public. Read more about the City Code of Ethics.