How is Steve McGarett of "Five-O" able to be a civilian police officer if he is in the military as well? Is it possible in real life to be in the military but assigned as a civilian police officer?

1 Answer 1


Commander Steven J. McGarrett is a member of the USNR (United States Navy Reserves).

Members of the Naval Reserve traditionally give over just one weekend per month for drilling and two weeks per annum for their annual training. As such, a member of the USNR would need another job (such as working as a policeman) in order to support themselves financially.

A few seconds on google reveals that combining police work with joining a military Reserve service (or, more commonly, leaving military active service and becoming a Reservist and then joining the police) is actually a pretty common career choice for real world Naval Reservists like Police Detective Navy Chief Lorelei Tanney, USNR

  • I agree with the poster above, but they refer to McGarrett as Commander. So, in real life, do policemen during their NON-Reserve duty still maintain the title "Commander" in their civilian employment. I would think that during the off period, Commander would be inappropriate to use as a title in the Civilian law enforcement job. Maybe I am wrong, but would be good to know any other Police officers in McGarett's situation who still are called by their military rank while working in their civilian military job.
    – user33136
    Apr 6, 2016 at 3:06
  • @curlyq - I don't know about the US, but in the UK it would be both normal and appropriate to refer to a Reserve officer that senior by their military rank in civilian life.
    – user7812
    Apr 6, 2016 at 6:21
  • Maybe his rank in the police force is commander? Apr 6, 2016 at 10:41
  • @jamesmcleod - I'm reasonably sure he's a Detective in the police force, not a Commander.
    – user7812
    Apr 6, 2016 at 10:59

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