Sheriff's office aims to recruit former soldiers with new program

Posted at 8:43 PM, Sep 30, 2016
and last updated 2018-07-24 21:30:27-04

In an effort to fill open positions, the Travis County Sheriff’s Office held a one stop testing event at Fort Hood on Friday for soldiers looking to transition back into civilian life.

The pilot program aims to attract those with military experience, who are often excellent candidates for a career in law enforcement, according to officials.

Trevor DeBeaumont became a Travis County Corrections Officer after serving four years in the military. He said soldiers often have qualities that are very useful in law enforcement such as discipline and physical training.

"A lot of soldiers can bring that to the table. A lot of soldiers are really motivated to get the job done and motivated to do things." DeBeaumont said "That kind of quality in a soldier embodies what law enforcement is as well,”

 For DeBeaumont, his job as an officer has been a stepping stone, one that could be very beneficial to troops like himself.  

“When I first got out of the military, I was very nervous. It was slightly difficult. I didn't have all the jobs lined up that I had anticipated. When I found the Travis County Sheriff's Office, it all changed.” DeBeaumont said. "They got me through the process really quick and helped me through it." 

There were fifteen participants at Friday's one-stop testing, they're applying for 95 open positions at the Sheriffs Office. Tests included a reading and comprehension exam, a physical test and a background interview with a recruiter, all on post. 

Sergeant First Class Ebony Jones was among those testing for the TCSO. She's going to be retiring this Saturday after 25 years as a healthcare specialist at the First Cavalry Division at Fort Hood.

"I've been doing my dream for 25 years and now I actually have to grow up so I have to look beyond and find what's good for me,” Jones said. "I'm excited and scared but mostly excited because it is a new chapter for me. I've been doing this since I was a kid and now I'm an adult."

When asked why she applied at the Sheriff's Office, she said she's not ready to stop serving.

"I want to continue to help people. As a medic, we are constantly helping people.” Jones said. "Being part of the Travis County Sheriff's Department would allow me to help persons that are in need of slight guidance in the right track.”

Christopher Hewitt, who is currently assigned to the Headquarters and Headquarters Battery 69th Air Defense Artillery Brigade, also applied for a position. He plans to retire from the military next May after 23 years of service.

"It's something that I've known being in the military. You are part of the brotherhood and you are providing their service to the nation and it's also the same thing that Travis County provides,” Hewitt said. "It is absolutely electrifying because you go from one uniform to another for a person with no lapse in between,” 

Much like Hewitt, who says a job at TCSO would be ideal, Jones hopes the next chapter in her career is as fulfilling as her time in the military.

Friday's tests are just the first step toward being hired. The process that follows includes a background check and a meeting with the Oral Review Board.

After being brought on, new hires can transfer to other jobs within the Travis County Jail after a year and a half.

The TSCO is planning more trips to Ft. Hood as early as next month. 

For information on open positions at the TSCO, click here

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