|Our DRE Officers|
At the Benton Police Department we are especially proud of our officers that have obtained the certification of Drug Recognition Expert. The training to achieve certification is rigorous and only a hand full of officers in the country have completed it. Out of the approximately 14,000 police officers in the state of Arkansas only about 150 of them are a certified DRE. We are proud to have three of those DREs in our department.
A drug recognition expert must have successfully completed an approved course in the Standardized Field Sobriety Testing (SFSTs) before beginning the three-phase Drug Evaluation and Classification (DEC) Program, which includes the following phases:
Phase One: The 16-hour DRE Pre-school, which includes an overview of the DRE evaluation procedures, the seven drug categories, eye examinations and proficiency in conducting the SFSTs.
Phase Two: The 56-hour DRE School which includes an overview of the drug evaluation procedures, expanded sessions on each drug category, drug combinations, examination of vital signs, case preparation, courtroom testimony, and Curriculum Vitae (C.V.) preparation. At the conclusion of the 7-days of training, the officer must successfully complete a written examination before moving to the third and final phase of training.
Phase Three: During this phase the candidate DRE must complete a minimum of 12 drug evaluations under the supervision of a trained DRE instructor. Of those 12 evaluations, the officer must identify an individual under the influence of at least three of the seven drug categories and obtain a minimum 75% toxicological corroboration rate. The office must then pass a final knowledge examination and be approved by two DRE instructors before being certified as a certified DRE.
Many states require an application. to be considered for DRE training. The application form provides detailed information about the applicants work history and involvement in impaired driving enforcement.
Ofc. Jamar Bennett
Ofc. Joey Bedsole
Ofc. Andrew Talbot attended DRE training in September of 2009. He is currently a DRE candidate and is expected to attain full certification as an expert within the next two months.