San Diego Sheriff's Department working to recruit more women - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

San Diego Sheriff's Department working to recruit more women

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - The Sheriff's Department is looking for a few good women to help keep the streets across San Diego County safe by recruiting more female deputies.

San Diego Sheriff's Deputy Kirsten Racine has been working side by side with her four-legged sworn deputy, for the past two years.

"My dog is an eight-year-old German Shepard. I've been working with him for two years. His name is Car. He is very, very loyal, sweet dog," she said.

RELATED: www.joinsdsheriff.net

For the past nine months, Deputy Olivia Steinmeyer and her K-9 Rafa have been patrolling the streets of Valley Center together. She remembers Rafa making quite an impression on her, during her first traffic stop under his watchful eyes.

"He was barking, and he was watching me the whole time. I thought, that is awesome, I have my partner, yet he's like my best friend, and he's watching me," said Steinmeyer.

K9 handlers must complete a grueling 12-week academy with their K9s, and stay in top physical shape.

"He's an 80 pound dog on a leash. I have to have 100% control of him all the time," said Steinmeyer.

Although K9s are intimidating, Deputy Racine, who works at the Las Colinas Detention and Re-Entry Facility for Women, said her K9 can have a psychologically calming effect as well.

"A lot of women think dogs are cute - want to know his name, how old, boy or girl. I've had many inmates tell me he reminds them of their dog," she said.

In order to apply to become a K9 handler, one must have previously been a deputy with the San Diego Sheriff's Department for at least two-years.

The San Diego Sheriff's Department is working to recruit more women. In fact, this Saturday, they are hosting a women's expo and career fair to fill a number of positions.

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