DAVIDSON COUNTY, N.C. -- Six jailers, 10 criminal deputies and four civil deputies; those are the people the Davidson County Sheriff’s Office needs to hire to be at full staff.
“10 percent short in jail, 10 percent short in patrol and 10 percent short in civil,” Sheriff David Grice said.
Grice believes bad publicity, other higher paying agencies and private sector jobs have contributed to a shortage at the department.
“Sometimes the shifts are one or so person short,” Grice said.
Some staff has been working overtime to make up for the vacancies, but Grice is looking for a long-term solution like more incentives for people to join the force.
Last year, commissioners raised salaries for deputies by about 6 percent. A few months ago, the sheriff’s office began offering a signing bonus. In the last few weeks, Grice announced the department would pay for rookie school.
He says there are other perks to the job too.
“We have 401(k),” Grice said. “We have a law enforcement retirement. If you want to help your community, then law enforcement is a way to help your community. A lot of it is altruistic.”
We compared the vacancies in Davidson County to other sheriff’s offices that are a similar size. Davidson County has 220 employees and 20 job openings. Randolph County has 246 employees and eight job openings. Alamance County has 283 employees and 10 job openings.