More women are joining the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department every year. The law enforcement agency currently has eight women serving as captains, which is the most their organization has ever seen.
The application process is obviously rigorous for anyone, so 8 News Now sent Reporter Sasha Loftis through recruitment to see exactly what it entails.
First, she stepped up behind the badge to sprint through the department’s physical fitness exam.
“It’s not a male only profession, as many would think” Recruiting Sergeant Jose Hernandez said. “We encourage that, we encourage the diversity, we want more female officers.”
This included a 15-inch vertical jump, a 19.5 second Illinois Agility run, sit ups, push ups, a 300-meter sprint, and a 1.5-mile run. This all demonstrates a person’s ability and stamina to handle obstacles on the street.
Sasha then took the 2-hour written exam and went through a mock polygraph test.
Captain Roxanne Burke is in charge of the department’s human resources division. She told 8 News NOW she sees so many more women in uniform compared to when she first joined the force.
“When I started I was traditionally the only female on a squad or on a shift,” Captain Burke said. “And I have seen that increase over the years.”
Capt. Burke and Recruiting Sergeant Jose Hernandez encourage women of all shapes and sizes to get in shape and start Metro’s recruitment process.
“There’s a huge margin there, but we are going to keep working at it,” Sergeant Hernandez said. “We’ll hopefully increase those numbers because we definitely need more female officers.”
“We will be able to answer those questions you may have about, ‘can I be a mother; can I be an officer,'” Hernandez added.
Sasha also sat down with Detective Steve Gordon. He’s in charge of the background check process.
“I tell everybody just tell the truth, that’s the biggest thing,” Gordon said.
Each candidate starts with an online form full of life questions. Gordon goes through them all in person.
“I feel I’m giving back to the department and the community because I am vetting those people now who want to serve us — you and me,” Gordon added. “You have people coming in with different issues, some people I kind of give guidance to like when I’m back working patrol.”
In the end, Sasha didn’t get a passing grade, but Burke, Gordon, and Hernandez said everyone should work for a job they love in law enforcement and experience everything the exciting career has to offer.
“Anybody, male or female find what you need to work on and strengthen and do that,” Burke said. “Think of just typical mothers, older sisters, aunts, we all tend to instinctively step in with that protective role, and we just do it with a uniform on now.”
If you’d like to learn more and apply for a job with the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, go here.