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Little kids often want to grow up to be cops, but should they?

PHOENIX — Little kids seem to always want to be cops at some point in their childhood.

“We’ve got the lights, we’ve got the sirens, [and] we help people out,” said Sgt. Vince Lewis with the Phoenix Police Department. “It’s one of those fields where people just tend to have a natural interest in it.”

Lewis said he is the son of two police officer fathers and has been with the Phoenix Department for 18 years. He added that he has “reaped the benefits” of a career in law enforcement.

“The pay is great, you get life skills, you get plenty of training, you get a little respect, you get a little heartache,” he said. “But again these are life lessons that I can pass on to my kids.”

There are some risks, and Lewis said he would want to have a long discussion with his own kids about safety and being prepared before advising they follow in his footsteps. But he said police departments try to help mitigate those concerns with things like experience and training.

“The great beauty of a career with the Phoenix police, for example, is the multitude of possibilities that you can go into,” he said.

From being a detective to criminal forensics, learning to fly helicopters to being on the SWAT team, Lewis says there are many directions a law enforcement career can take people.

For moms and dads that have a kid who’s interested in more information, Lewis suggests looking into the Phoenix Police’s Law Enforcement Explorer Program. 

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