EL PASO COUNTY, Colo. (KKTV) - Eighteen new deputies graduated Friday, specifically trained to work at the jail.
In 2018, there were 80 inmate assaults on deputies or staff members at the El Paso County Jail, more than double the number from 2016.
With the new program, the El Paso County Sheriff's Office is working to get a handle on the situation.
Sheriff Bill Elder hopes this new detention based training will help.
Chad MacNeilly is a former Army Ranger, with five combat deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. He served his country. Now, he wants to serve his community.
"People matter and that's what's important,” Deputy MacNeilly said.
When they move into their jail positions, nine other jail deputies will move to the streets to patrol.
"We have some positions with special functions like Metro Narcotics and our Investigations Division that we're looking to backfill. We're also adding a couple of school resource officers this year,” Elder said.
With the school shooting this week in Highlands Ranch, the sheriff says adding three more school resource officers is important.
"I can't stress enough the necessity for having school resource officers in our schools. We're now going to have 12 officers throughout the county, and we're looking to engage with other school districts to add even more above that,” Sheriff Elder said.
Another class of detention deputies will start training in a few weeks. The training program takes 10 weeks.