CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – The West Virginia State Capitol houses the West Virginia Legislature and the Office of the Governor, so not just anyone can come in and out anytime. Before anyone gets in, they have to go through the West Virginia Division of Protective Services or Capitol Police, but they are currently understaffed.

Capitol Police encourage any retired officers, even if they have lapsed law enforcement certifications to apply.

With the cooperation of the West Virginia State Police Academy and the West Virginia Law Enforcement Professional Standards Subcommittee, individuals with lapsed certifications are able to become recertified and continue their law enforcement careers.

Capitol Police Sergeant Wallace Looney says he retired after 21 years of service with the Williamson Police Department in Mingo County. Before he accepted the position with Capitol Police, Sergeant Looney also taught criminal justice at the collegiate level and was a police advisor in 2008 in Afghanistan.

He says when he came home to the Mountain State a position at the Capitol seemed like the right next step.

“As a retired officer, I wanted to return to West Virginia and restart my career and this was a good fit for me. I knew something about the department, so it was a very easy decision,” Sergeant Looney says.

He also says his certification had lapsed when he was applying, but through the Capitol Police, he was able to become recertified fairly quickly.

Capitol police leaders say the reason they’re looking for retired officers is because they “bring invaluable experience and resources to the division, making them eligible for leadership positions quickly.”

Anyone interested in applying can contact the Capitol Police at (304)-558-9911 or visit their website.