Sheriff's Office Detention Specialist

County Of Sonoma   Santa Rosa, CA   Full-time     Administration / Clerical
Posted on July 29, 2022
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Working as a Sonoma County Sheriff's Detention Specialist offers a challenging and rewarding work environment, the satisfaction of knowing that you're working to better the community, and benefits, including*:
  • With experience and good work performance, career advancement to Detention Specialist II ($50,028-$60,818/year)
  • Eligibility for a 5% salary increase after 1040 hours (6 months when working full-time) for good work performance; eligibility for a 5% salary increase for good performance every year thereafter, until reaching the top of the salary range
  • County paid 100% premium contribution for the majority of employee-only and employee + family health plan options
  • An annual Staff Development/Wellness Benefit allowance up to $500 and ongoing education/training opportunities
  • Differential pay for swing and graveyard shifts
  • Competitive vacation and sick leave accruals, 12 paid holidays, and an additional 8 floating holiday hours per year
  • County contribution to a Health Reimbursement Arrangement to help fund post-retirement employee health insurance/benefits
  • Retirement fully integrated with Social Security
  • May be eligible for up to 8 weeks (320 hours) of Paid Parental Leave after 12 months of County employment
  • Onsite workout facilities

Do you thrive working in fast-paced customer service environments and:

  • Remain calm, clear, and in control when working with difficult or irate individuals?
  • Demonstrate excellent communication skills and the ability to work well in a team?
  • Possess effective problem-solving skills, empathy, patience, and a common-sense approach to supporting customer's needs?


If you answered "Yes", apply to be a Sheriff's Office Detention Specialist and join our team!
Supporting law enforcement is an exciting and challenging opportunity for those who thrive in fast-paced environments. As a Sheriff's Office Detention Specialist you will work in County detention facilities alongside law enforcement and interact with incarcerated individuals, learning to perform the full range of administrative, clerical, and legal document processing duties related to booking, custody alternatives, records processing, and reception which includes a multi-line phone system. While working as a Detention Specialist you will gain experience and seniority, which will allow more flexibility in selecting different shifts, and the opportunity to promote to Detention Specialist II.

Being a Sheriff's Detention Specialist can be demanding, but if you have the passion for this work, you will be rewarded with camaraderie and the ability to help others in your community. Although these positions require minimal or no physical contact with inmates, Detention Specialists do work in close proximity to and interact with inmates (e.g., answering questions, exchanging paperwork and property, etc.). Detention Specialists are required to work day, swing, and graveyard shifts, weekends, holidays, other shift assignments, and overtime. They are also subject to departmental policies, including uniform requirements and standards of conduct.

*Salary is negotiable within the established range. Benefits described herein do not represent a contract and may be changed without notice. Additional information can found in the Service Employees International Union Local 1021 Memorandum Of Understanding (SEIU MOU) and our Employee Benefits Directory.
This recruitment is being conducted to fill multiple Detention Specialist I positions in the Sheriff's Office. This employment list may also be used to fill future full-time or extra-help positions as they occur during the active status of the list. Qualified County employees who wish to be considered for future positions should consider applying to this recruitment. The Civil Service title of this position is Detention Specialist I. 


Minimum Qualifications

Education and Experience: Any combination of education and work experience which would provide an opportunity to acquire the knowledge and abilities listed herein.  Normally, this would include one year of clerical work experience in an office providing substantial customer service.

Additional Requirements: Candidates certified for employment must be willing to undergo and successfully complete thorough background investigation conducted by the Sheriff's Office.  Additionally, candidates must be willing to work in uniform, and willing to work all shifts, including days, evenings, nights, weekdays, weekends, holidays, and overtime.

License: Possession of a valid driver's license at the appropriate level including special endorsements, as required by the State of California, may be required depending upon assignment to perform the essential job functions of the position.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

Knowledge of: general clerical and office practices and procedures; word processing and other data processing programs used in a business office; basic arithmetic, English grammar, vocabulary, spelling, punctuation, and composition.

Ability to: learn to interpret laws, procedures, policies and rules related to Sheriff Office's detention facilities; effectively deal with irate individuals in difficult situations; identify potentially dangerous situations and react quickly and calmly in emergency situations; learn procedures used in maintaining security of a detention facility; perform several tasks simultaneously amid noise and interruption; maintain accurate records; understand and follow oral and written instructions; make decisions in routine procedural matters; demonstrate good judgment while working within the guidelines of established policies and procedures; communicate clearly and effectively with people of all ages and backgrounds; establish and maintain positive and effective working relationships with staff, public, and outside agencies; learn to interpret, explain, and apply specific statutes, codes, laws, regulations, and procedures; learn to maintain complex legal record and databases; learn to locate, identify, and correct technical inaccuracies; make accurate arithmetic calculations; operate a variety of office equipment.

Selection Procedure & Some Helpful Tips When Applying


  • Your application information and your responses to the supplemental questions are evaluated and taken into consideration throughout the entire selection process.
  • You should list all employers and positions held within the last ten years in the work history section of your application. Be as thorough as possible when responding to the supplemental questions.
  • You may include history beyond ten years if related to the position for which you are applying. If you held multiple positions with one employer, list out each position separately.
  • Failure to follow these instructions may impact your competitiveness in this process or may result in disqualification.