Detention Officer

Ensuring safety and security.

FCSO Detention Officers

Detention Officers are responsible for the safety and security of the Forsyth County Law Enforcement Detention Center which includes staff, contract personnel, visitors, and inmates. Detention Officers are responsible for the direct supervision of inmates and preserving their personal rights while incarcerated. This includes but is not limited to: providing safety and security inside a housing dorm, processing new intakes, maintaining court documents, serving meals, and escorting inmates and/or visitors. Detention Officers must be able to think independently and maintain a level of professionalism, firmness, and tact when dealing with a diverse inmate population. Training is provided to all Detention Officers in order to prepare for the hazards of the job.

Minimum Requirements

Every Justice Officer employed or certified in North Carolina shall:

  • Be a citizen of the United States
  • Be at least 20 years of age
  • Be a high school graduate, or the equivalent (GED)
  • Be fingerprinted (Provided by FCSO)
  • Have a medical examination by a licensed physician (Provided by FCSO)
  • Produce a negative result on a drug screen (Provided by FCSO)
  • Not have previously committed or been convicted of a felony
  • Not have committed or been convicted of a Class B Misdemeanor within the last 5 years
  • Not have committed or been convicted of any combination of 4 or more misdemeanors in a lifetime

The Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office does not discriminate on basis of sex, pregnancy, race, color, religion, nation of origin, age, sexual orientation or disability unless a bonafide occupational qualification exists.

Detention Officer Responsibilities

  • Responsible for the total safety and security of the Forsyth County Law Enforcement Detention Center (FCLEDC) including staff members, contract personnel, visitors, and inmates.
  • Directly supervises inmates, ensuring a secure and safe living environment while protecting inmates’ personal rights.
  • Performs a diverse range of duties throughout the Detention Center.
  • Enforces security measures, maintains order and discipline, and prevents altercations.
  • Reports all incidents and infractions, providing documentation and taking corrective action as necessary.
  • Efficiently multi-tasks, communicates clearly, and remains calm under stress.

Detention Officer Starting Pay

$22.21/hour (approx. $49, 517.20/year) with a $3.00 differential for permanent night shift.


Rotating shifts, generous paid time off, career ladder advancement opportunities, modern workout facilities, contemporary equipment, uniforms and footwear provided, plus County benefits.

Pay Incentives

Offered for prior law enforcement service, prior active military service, associate degree, bachelor’s degree, and bilingual ability.

Hiring Process

The employment process generally takes 8 to 12 weeks to complete; however, applications may remain active up to 6 months. The employment process will end upon failure of any step in the process and/or the discovery of unacceptable information.

  • Standardized Test
  • F3 and Biographical Assessment
  • Thorough Background Investigation and verification of Criminal Records
  • Credit Check
  • Interview(s)
  • Polygraph Examination
  • Drug Test
  • Medical / Psychological / Cognitive Skills Examinations (Administered by FMRT)
  • Job shadowing for one full shift

Join Our Team

(Click here for a brief tutorial on starting the online application process!)

Potential Opportunities

There are many specialized opportunities for Detention Officers, including:

Armed Detention Officer

  • Provides armed escorts for inmates transported outside of the Detention Center for medical and/or mental health treatments.
  • Transports inmates in a secure and legal manner, ensuring the safety of the inmate and the public by performing searches and taking measure to prevent escape.
  • Verifies all documentation is complete, the accuracy of all paperwork and the identity of the inmate being transported.
  • Certified and trained annually on use of agency-issued conducted electrical weapons (CEW).
  • Completes agency firearms training and qualifies annually with agency-issued firearm.

Special Response Team

  • Highly trained in controlling and resolving critical situations within the Detention Center.
  • Provides high-profile security, including cell searches and institutional shakedowns.
  • Extracts uncooperative or barricaded inmates from their cells.
  • Escorts high-risk inmates.
  • Contains and neutralizes situations with disruptive or combative inmates.

Security Threat Group Unit

  • Receives specialized training in identifying indicators of involvement in gang activity or other security threat groups.
  • Identifies, interviews, and tracks suspected and validated gang members and their respective information.
  • Documents findings and collects intelligence for compilation in appropriate reports.
  • Forms, categorizes, and disseminates threat assessments to partner law enforcement entities.

Intake Officer

  • Receives and processes arrestees into the Detention Center, interacting with officers from various law enforcement entities.
  • Inspects and verifies documentation, then prepares routine records on inmates.
  • Searches inmates, inventories and stores all accompanying personal property.
  • Completes the booking process and issues Detention Center property to inmates.
  • Observes inmates for indications of risk factors and makes housing assignments.

FCSO Special Teams

I am honored to serve with the men and women of the FCSO. They work hard, every day, to serve the people of our community.

Are you ready to serve your community?

Community Involvement

Interested in a job
or inviting FCSO to a job fair?

Phone: 336-917-7008

Interested in FCSO attending
a community event?

Phone: 336-917-7010


301 North Church Street
Winston-Salem, NC 27101

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