JCSO’s detention deputies graduate

-A A +A

A career path of ‘brotherhood & adrenaline’

By Corinne Westeman

Editor’s note: This is the third of a three-part series.


After a long day of classes at the Jeffco Sheriff Office’s detention deputy academy, recruit Casey Buell-Schoenman was excited to go to his son’s karate class with his wife Ari.

For the Buell-Schoenman family, who live in the Lakewood area, the 10-week academy has gone by fast.

Previously, Casey had been a massage therapist and sometimes worked 50-hour weeks. Now, Ari said, they’ve been spoiled with the academy’s more 9-to-5 type schedule, which allows him to be home most evenings and weekends.

But, after Casey and his 15 colleagues graduate this week, they’ll start another 10 weeks of practical field training at the Jeffco jail.

The new routine will take some getting used to, Ari said. And yet, with their second child due in April, Casey’s schedule at the jail should allow him to spend more time with the new baby than he did when their son, Talon, was born, she explained.

Overall, Ari and Talon, 3, expressed their excitement to pin Casey’s badge on him at the Oct. 25 graduation.

“Talon is very excited for his dad to be a police officer,” she said. “And ... we’re excited to be around Jeffco. This is definitely a career for Casey. It’s fun to see how happy this change has made him — he really enjoys that brotherhood and adrenaline.”

True to their mission

Deputy Jason Richardson, who has been working with the recruits since Day 1 of the academy, said that this group really embraced the idea of growing together as a family.

“They started out as strangers, but they’ve grown very well as a team,” Richardson said. “It’s clear from how they interact and study together.”

But after establishing that strong connection, most of the recruits will be separated during their 10 weeks of field training at the jail, Casey said.

“I won’t see some of these guys for months,” he continued. “I’ve had so much fun in the academy, part of me is sad it’s over. ...But I’m also excited to start work.”

At the beginning of the academy, Casey expressed a desire to eventually move toward JCSO’s patrol unit. But, after the last 10 weeks, he said that he can envision staying in detentions longer than he initially thought.

“With Jeffco specifically, there are so many ways that my career could go,” he said. “But, I don’t feel the need to rush to do something else. My people skills are going to be better, and my whole view of law enforcement as a whole is going to be strengthened by my time working in the jail.”

Richardson remarked how quickly the academy has gone by, commenting that the recruits hit the ground running to absorb everything in a short amount of time.

He likened himself to a proud dad, saying that he and his fellow instructors have tried to lead the recruits by example. His advice to the recruits as they graduate: Maintain everything that they were taught; identify the traits that will make them successful in law enforcement; and be true to the JCSO’s values and mission.

Casey reiterated that he applied for the position because he wants to serve people, and said that, despite being detained, the jail inmates are the community — they are people he could see in his everyday life.

“The correction function is just part of our system of laws, and this training has given me insight into how human everyone is,” he said. “(The jail) is not just a place for bad people. ... Some of them haven’t even been sentenced. And, everyone who is in there will eventually be back out in the community.”