Do city police officers have any authority to make arrests in the ETJ?
A permanently licensed city police officer is a peace officer. TEX. CODE CRIM. PROC. art.
2.12(3). Various categories of peace officers, a licensed city police officer among them, may make an arrest without warrant for an offense committed in their presence or view. Id. art. 14.03(g)(2). However, if the police officer is outside of the city, the officer “may arrest a person for a violation of Subtitle C, Title 7, Transportation Code only if the offense is committed in the county or counties in which the municipality employing the peace officer is located.” Id. Subtitle C, Title 7, Transportation Code, contains the “Rules of the Road,” which are the state traffic laws that a city police officer enforces. A police officer who makes an arrest under the article 14.03(g)(2) authority “shall as soon as practicable after making the arrest notify a law enforcement agency having jurisdiction where the arrest was made. The law enforcement agency shall then take custody of: (A) the person committing the offense and take the person before a magistrate in compliance with Article 14.06; and (B) any property seized during or after the arrest as if the property had been seized by a peace officer of that law enforcement agency” Id. 14.3(g)(3). Thus, while a city police officer may make an arrest in the ETJ, it is oftentimes county law enforcement and county courts that handle the case.

Another instance in which a police officer has authority to arrest a person outside of the city occurs when the officer is acting as part of a regional task force. When counties and cities form mutual aid law enforcement task forces pursuant to Local Government Chapter 362, a law enforcement officer for one entity is authorized to make arrests within the area covered by the agreement, even when the area exceeds what would be the officer’s normal geographic or territorial jurisdiction. TEX. LOC. GOV’T CODE § 362.003.

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1. What is the extraterritorial jurisdiction and why was it created?
2. How much territory is encompassed in a city’s ETJ?
3. Why does my city’s ETJ encompass a different amount of territory than provided in state law?
4. What happens to the ETJ when a city annexes property?
5. Should a city have a map showing the boundaries of its ETJ?
6. May cities swap ETJ?
7. May a city apply its ordinances in the ETJ?
8. Do city taxes apply in the ETJ?
9. May qualified voters residing in the ETJ ever vote in a city election?
10. Do city police officers have any authority to make arrests in the ETJ?
11. Do municipal courts have jurisdiction over cases that arise in the ETJ?