38 U.S. Code § 902 - Enforcement and arrest authority of Department police officers

(a)
(1) Employees of the Department who are Department police officers shall, with respect to acts occurring on Department property
(A)
enforce Federal laws;
(B)
enforce the rules prescribed under section 901 of this title;
(C)
enforce traffic and motor vehicle laws of a State or local government (by issuance of a citation for violation of such laws) within the jurisdiction of which such Department property is located as authorized by an express grant of authority under applicable State or local law;
(D)
carry the appropriate Department-issued weapons, including firearms, while off Department property in an official capacity or while in an official travel status;
(E)
conduct investigations, on and off Department property, of offenses that may have been committed on property under the original jurisdiction of Department, consistent with agreements or other consultation with affected Federal, State, or local law enforcement agencies; and
(F)
carry out, as needed and appropriate, the duties described in subparagraphs (A) through (E) when engaged in duties authorized by other Federal statutes.
(2)
Subject to regulations prescribed under subsection (b), a Department police officer may make arrests on Department property for a violation of a Federal law or any rule prescribed under section 901(a) of this title, and on any arrest warrant issued by competent judicial authority.
(b) The Secretary shall prescribe regulations with respect to Department police officers. Such regulations shall include—
(1)
policies with respect to the exercise by Department police officers of the enforcement and arrest authorities provided by this section;
(2)
the scope and duration of training that is required for Department police officers, with particular emphasis on dealing with situations involving patients; and
(3)
rules limiting the carrying and use of weapons by Department police officers.
(c)
The powers granted to Department police officers designated under this section shall be exercised in accordance with guidelines approved by the Secretary and the Attorney General.
(d)
Rates of basic pay for Department police officers may be increased by the Secretary under section 7455 of this title.
Editorial Notes
Prior Provisions

Prior section 902 was renumbered section 2302 of this title.

Provisions similar to those in this section were contained in section 218(b) of this title prior to repeal by Pub. L. 102–83, § 2(a).

Amendments

2010—Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 111–163, § 1001(1)(A), amended par. (1) generally. Prior to amendment, par. (1) read as follows: “Employees of the Department who are Department police officers shall, with respect to acts occurring on Department property, enforce—

“(A) Federal laws;

“(B) the rules prescribed under section 901 of this title; and

“(C) subject to paragraph (2), traffic and motor vehicle laws of a State or local government within the jurisdiction of which such Department property is located.”

Subsec. (a)(2), (3). Pub. L. 111–163, § 1001(1)(B), (C), redesignated par. (3) as (2), inserted “, and on any arrest warrant issued by competent judicial authority” before the period, and struck out former par. (2) which read as follows: “A law described in subparagraph (C) of paragraph (1) may be enforced under such subparagraph only as authorized by an express grant of authority under applicable State or local law. Any such enforcement shall be by the issuance of a citation for violation of such law.”

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 111–163, § 1001(2), amended subsec. (c) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (c) read as follows: “The Secretary shall consult with the Attorney General before prescribing regulations under paragraph (1) of subsection (b).”

Statutory Notes and Related Subsidiaries
Police Crisis Intervention Training of Department of Veterans Affairs

Pub. L. 116–214, title II, § 205, Dec. 5, 2020, 134 Stat. 1038, provided that:

“(a) Training.—
The Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall provide to Department police officers an annual training on the prevention of suicide among the population served by the Department police officers.
“(b) Curriculum.—In carrying out subsection (a), the Secretary shall update any similar training provided before the date of the enactment of this Act [Dec. 5, 2020] to ensure that the curriculum for the training addresses, at a minimum, the following:
“(1)
Effective behavioral science procedures for suicide prevention and risk mitigation.
“(2)
Crisis intervention and de-escalation skills, including through the use of interactive training.
“(3)
Information about mental health and substance abuse disorders.
“(4)
Information about local law enforcement crisis intervention teams and other resources for veterans experiencing mental health crises available by the Department of Veterans Affairs, other elements of the Federal Government, and the community in which the police officers serve.
“(c) Consultation.—
The Secretary shall ensure that the annual training provided to Department police officers at a medical facility of the Department under subsection (a) is provided in consultation with law enforcement training accreditation organizations and the mental health experts at such facility.
“(d) Plan on Community Partnerships.—The Secretary shall ensure that each police force of a facility of the Department develops a plan to enter into partnerships with—
“(1)
local community mental health organizations and experts, local community veterans organizations, and local community criminal justice organizations and experts; and
“(2)
local police departments, including by facilitating the sharing of training resources with crisis intervention teams of the local police departments.
“(e) Report.—Not later than one year after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit to the Committees on Veterans’ Affairs of the House of Representatives and the Senate a report on the annual training under subsection (a), including—
“(1)
a description of the curriculum of such training;
“(2) with respect to the year preceding the date of the report—
“(A)
the number of facilities of the Department that conducted such training;
“(B)
the number of Department police officers who received such training; and
“(C)
any barriers to ensuring that each Department police officer receives such training;
“(3)
any recommendations to address the barriers identified under paragraph (2)(C); and
“(4)
the number of facilities of the Department that have entered into partnerships pursuant to subsection (d).
“(f) Department Police Officer Defined.—
In this section, the term ‘Department police officer’ means an employee of the Department of Veterans Affairs specified in section 902(a) of title 38, United States Code.”