The people in your neighborhood depend on police officers to protect them and their property. Police officers have many jobs to do in order to keep you safe. Police officers investigate crimes and arrest suspected criminals. They search for people when they are lost, make sure drivers obey the traffic laws, and respond to emergencies. They also direct traffic and give first aid to those hurt at the scene of an accident.
Some police officers work with special units such as horseback, bicycle, and motorcycle. These special units work in a variety of places. In the canine corps, police officers work with dogs that are specially trained to sniff out bombs and drugs. There are even police officers patrolling the rivers and harbors to make sure boaters stay safe and follow the boating laws.
The Federal Government has a very important role in law enforcement. Federal agencies such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), and the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) enforce laws that affect the entire United States. They investigate kidnappings, spies, drug dealers, civil rights violations, and other offenses. It is the job of another Federal agency, the Secret Service, to protect the President and Vice President. You can learn more about the Federal Government's role in law enforcement by visiting the Department of Justice's for Kids and Youth Page.