A Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station Reserve Forces Bureau captain is looking for people who want to help the community by becoming a reserve deputy.
Captain Bob Holden, of Saugus, has been in the SCV Sheriff’s RFB for the past seven years while working at his full-time job as a general manager at Costco since 1988.
“I was running around as a young man and I always wanted to be a police officer,” Holden said. “Maybe the time wasn’t right or I had too much success at my regular job. I then had kids and regular responsibilities. The reserve program gave me the opportunity to be a peace officer but still maintain my job.”
Reserve deputies have the same responsibilities as Sheriff’s Station deputies and often respond to the same calls for service. They are “part-time deputies and full-time heroes.”
“We get the same calls for service and provide medical service, traffic control and responding to burglaries or any criminal activity might regular deputies might respond to,” Holden said. “You have to be healthy, you have to be fit. It is dangerous.”
Reserve deputies are being called to help with security for this weekend for the anniversary of Paul Walker’s death, he said. Holden has also covered events including fires and earthquakes.
“The (other deputies) depend on us,” Holden said.
Holden is trying to replenish the numbers of volunteer deputies in the Santa Clarita Valley and bring the number of volunteers to 30 or more. There are currently 22 trained members of the RFB.
“Reserve deputies are an important part of the Sheriff’s Department,” said Deputy Josh Dubin of the SCV Sheriff’s Station, “Their service is invaluable to this community.”
People interested in becoming a volunteer deputy are invited by the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’ Station to attend an orientation held on the second Thursday of every month at 7 p.m. at the station.
Requirements are virtually the same as a non-reserve deputy and include being a United States Citizen, being 21 years old, graduating high school/GED, have a California Class “C” Driver’s license, be employed or a full-time student, be able to attend the Sheriff’s Department Reserve Academy, be willing to take an oath of allegiance for public employees, be in good physical condition and have a background investigation.
“I work about 55 hours a week as general manager. We have two classes a week in the evenings 5-10 p.m. and all day Sunday. It takes about five and a half months of training,” Holden said. “We learn about tactics, physical fitness, weapons, emergency vehicles. They give it to you in a format to allow you to get the training and still have regular employment.”
Holden said deputies are required to volunteer at least 20 hours a month but some of his reserve deputies volunteer about 600 hours a year, nearly three times the required amount.
“The base pay is $1 a year,” Holden said. “That’s what makes it a noble venture is people are risking their lives to help others.”
For more information about the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station Reserve Forces Bureau, visit the website.
“We have people that work in any job imaginable,” Holden said. “If they have the time and spirit to contribute to the community, this is an opportunity for them to do that.”