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Law Enforcement Training

Training for Archaeological Resource Protection (TARP)

For Law Enforcement

Archaeological sites on Florida’s State-owned or State-controlled lands are irreplaceable assets. While their location on State land affords them special protections from disturbance or destruction by development and relic hunters, monitoring and protecting these resources presents unique challenges for law enforcement officers. The TARP program is specifically designed for law enforcement officers who are tasked with the protection of these important resources. The course is designed to familiarize State, Federal, and County Law Enforcement agencies with archaeological resources and the laws that protect them. 

Upon completion of the class, students will:

  • Understand the nature and importance of cultural resources and why archaeological sites are significant
  • Be able to apply knowledge of the physical aspects of prehistoric and historic artifacts to differentiate them from fossils and other natural objects.
  • Be familiar with the major periods of prehistoric and historic Florida and the types of artifacts associated with each.
  • Have more detailed knowledge of Federal and State laws protecting archaeological resources on state managed lands
  • Be able to identify archaeological sites and differentiate damage resulting from human actions from natural disturbances
  • Know the common characteristics of looters and the various reasons they engage in this illicit activity
  • Understand the role of the Bureau of Archaeological Research (BAR) in helping law enforcement officers document damage to archaeological sites and aid in prosecution of offenders
  • Have the names and contact information for the appropriate BAR representatives that will assist them with questions and concerns about archaeological resources, sites, and cultural resource crimes.

The TARP program has recently been overhauled and the necessity for flexibility has been incorporated into the recent changes to the program.  Classes of varying lengths and level of detail have been designed to provide law enforcement officers with training that is easily incorporated into their schedules. This flexibility also allows the training to be tailored to a specific region or the specific needs of a particular class.

Sample two-day training schedule (pdf)

Sample one-day training schedule (pdf)

For additional information, or if you are interested in hosting a TARP class, contact Paulette McFadden at or by phone at 850-245-6549. 


Next Scheduled Training Course Dates:

TARP courses are currently scheduled by request.