COVINGTON, Ky. -- It takes guts to do what Deputy James Smith does, he said Friday, but the Kenton County Detention Center is looking for gutsy people to join him as deputy jailers.
"Every day is different," Smith said. "You really don't know what you're getting yourself into."
The center is over capacity with inmates and short five staffers, Lt. Col. Bob Dietz said. It has 94 deputy jailers when it should have 99, and even a small shortage creates headaches for the staffers forced to fill the scheduling gaps.
"People have to work overtime," he said. "It becomes stressful on families and individuals who have to stay over and work unexpectedly."
Smith, who has spent eight years patrolling the detention center, said he initially took the job because his family was in trouble. It offers health insurance and retirement benefits, and Dietz said the requirements for entry depend primarily on physical and psychological fitness for the job.
"This is a job you can learn," he said. "You have to be somewhat physically fit to do this job, but the main thing you have to have is common sense and ability to communicate with people."
Applicants are also required to have a high school diploma or equivalent, and military experience is preferred but not required.
"There's no reason why a person off the street like me with no experience couldn't come in here and do this," Smith said. "You have to have a little guts because you're going to be telling people who've never followed the rules to do certain things."
Anyone interested in applying for the five open positions can learn more online.