As with most police departments in the world, LAPD rank and insignia are based on existing military ranks.
The most visible exception is the police badge, which is worn above the left shirt pocket for uniformed officers, and carried in a wallet or other holder for plain clothes officers.
Insignia worn as metal pins on a shirt collar and as marks on a jacket shoulder.
|Chief of Police|
|Captain I – III|
|Lieutenant I – II|
Insignia worn as embroidered patches on the upper sleeves of a shirt or jacket.
|Sergeant II||Detective III|
|Sergeant I||Detective II|
|Senior Lead Officer
Police Officer III+1
|Police Officer III|
|Police Officer II
Police Officer I
Service stripes—each representing five years—are worn above the left cuff on long-sleeved shirts.
Departmental insignia are worn at the top of the sleeve beneath the shoulder for officers assigned to the Traffic Division, Motorcycle Division, Air Support Division, Metropolitan Division, and SWAT. Officers assigned to the Patrol Division do not usually wear a departmental shoulder patch.