Peace Officer Law and Legal Definition

A peace officer is generally a law enforcement officer, which may include a variety of positions responsible for enforcing laws, such as police, probation officers, correctional facility personnel, juvenile justice employees, attorney generals, and others. The precise definition of a peace officer is governed by state laws, which vary by state.

The following is an example of one state's definition of peace officer:

""Peace officers" means sheriffs of counties, constables, marshals, policemen of cities and towns, commissioned personnel of the department of public safety, peace officers who are appointed by a multicounty water conservation district and who have received a certificate from the Arizona peace officer standards and training board, police officers who are appointed by community college district governing boards and who have received a certificate from the Arizona peace officer standards and training board, police officers who are appointed by the Arizona board of regents and who have received a certificate from the Arizona peace officer standards and training board and police officers who are appointed by the governing body of a public airport pursuant to section 28-8426 and who have received a certificate from the Arizona peace officer standards and training board."