We are Offering a $10,000 Bonus for new Recruits and $15,000 bonus for Laterals! Apply Now!

Building Lasting Law Enforcement and Police Careers

Largest Law Enforcement Agency in Contra Costa Challenging Career Opportunities Over 1,000 Sworn and Professional Employees


Recruits who graduate from the academy will be sworn in as Peace Officers and promoted to the rank of Deputy Sheriff.


Read more information about our minimum qualifications and background requirements. If you still have questions, talk to a recruiter about various police careers!


Recruits are paid during their training at the Basic Academy, and graduates will be sworn in, promoted to Deputy Sheriff, and receive a salary increase.


If you have what it takes, we want to meet you. To be successful, please take some time to read through our requirements for optimal performance during your screening.

What does it take to start my career as a Deputy Sheriff?


Deputy Sheriff-Recruit

Deputy Sheriff-Recruits are paid during their training period at the Basic Academy.

The Contra Costa County Office of the Sheriff is seeking men and women interested in an exciting and challenging career in law enforcement. Prior police careers are not required. Individuals who are appointed as Deputy Sheriff-Recruit will be assigned to attend our Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) approved police academy, which involves 26 weeks of intensive academic instruction combined with rigorous physical fitness training. Upon successful completion of the Academy, recruits will graduate and be sworn in as Peace Officers and promoted to the first step of Deputy Sheriff. Academy graduates may be assigned to the Patrol Division or the Custody Services Bureau.

If you are interested in law enforcement and feel you can meet the challenge, you are encouraged to apply.

About Us

The Contra Costa County Office of the Sheriff enjoys an outstanding reputation as one of the most professional, progressive agencies in the United States. In addition to operating the most innovative detention facilities in the country, the Office of the Sheriff provides patrol services throughout the county including three contract cities for which it provides total police services. Many other specialized assignments are also available. As a department of over 1,100 employees, with some 700 who are sworn, the Contra Costa County Office of the Sheriff continues to grow and progress, providing excellent opportunities for long-lasting police careers.

Pay Range

$102,641 – $151,648 (2023-2026)

  • $10,000 hiring bonus for recruits
  • $15,000 hiring bonus for laterals
  • No retirement “maximum age”
  • Wide variety of assignments
  • Numerous promotional opportunities
  • Initial assignment may be to the Patrol Division or Custody Services Bureau


Salary: Deputy Sheriff-Recruits are paid during their training period at the Basic Academy. Upon successful completion of Academy training, graduates will be sworn in as Peace Officers, promoted to Deputy Sheriff, and receive a salary increase. Advancement to the higher steps of the Deputy Sheriff salary range is in accordance with the County Salary Ordinance and the County Personnel Management Regulations.

Generous Incentive Plans

After their first year, Deputy Sheriffs are eligible for an additional pay differential based on P.O.S.T. Certificates. P.O.S.T. Intermediate Certificates earn two and one-half percent (2 ½ %). P.O.S.T. Advanced Certificates earn an additional two and one-half percent (2 ½%). Persons speaking a second language may qualify for bilingual differential pay of $100.00 per month, in selected positions.

Hiring Bonus: $10,000 for recruits and $15,000 for laterals.

Shift Work: Deputy Sheriffs work a variety of hours and shifts depending on the particular assignment, including 3/12, 5/8, 4/10 and 9/80. Time and a half is paid for approved overtime worked.

Uniforms: Deputy Sheriffs are paid a uniform allowance of $872 annually.

Bilingual Pay: $100.00/month in selected positions.

Savings: A credit union is available which offers systematic savings and loans at low-interest rates.

Holidays: An average of thirteen (13) paid holidays per year.

Vacation: Two (2) weeks vacation each year for the first five (5) years, three (3) weeks vacation for 5-10, further increases beyond 10 years.

Sick Leave: Twelve (12) working days sick leave are accumulated each year. Credits are accumulated indefinitely.

Insurance: Prepaid medical and hospital plans including dental and life insurance are available to employees and their dependents. Employees may select a health plan, dental plan, or health and dental plan through CalPERS. A term life insurance policy is included with any health and/or dental plan enrollment.

Retirement: 2.7% at 57 years of age. Deputy Sheriffs are members of the Safety Service Retirement established under the County Employees Retirement Law of 1937 with reciprocity with PERS.



Please Review The List Below

  • License: Valid California Motor Vehicle Operator’s License at time of appointment.
  • Education: Possession of a US high school diploma, G.E.D. equivalency, or California high school proficiency certificate.
  • Age: Must be 21 years of age or older at time of appointment. No maximum age
  • Citizenship: Must be legally authorized to work in the United States under federal law.
  • Vision: 20/20 uncorrected each eye; corrected to 20/30 each eye.
  • Hearing: Must not have suffered a hearing loss of over 25 decibels in the 500, 1000, and 2000 frequency ranges for each ear.
  • Physical: Ability to meet such health standards established by the County Medical Consultant.


If you are interested in police careers and feel you can meet the challenge, you are encouraged to apply.

Background Requirements

A thorough background investigation including a polygraph examination, a medical examination, and psychological testing shall be conducted according to the specifications of the State of California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training.  

Inquiries into hate group membership, participation in hate group activity, or public expressions of hate as defined by Cal. Pen. Code § 13680 and pursuant to Cal. Pen. Code § 13681 will be made as a part of the background investigation. Candidates shall not have been convicted of a felony in this state or any other state or in any federal jurisdiction,  of any offense in any other state or in any federal jurisdiction, which would have been a felony if committed in this state, or discharged from the military for committing an offense, as adjudicated by a military tribunal, which would have been a felony if committed in this state as defined by Cal. Gov. Code § 1029.

Disqualifying Factors:

In addition to the definition of disqualifying criminal acts as defined by Cal. Gov. Code § 1029, applicants who have engaged in “Serious Misconduct” as defined by Cal. Pen. Code § 13510.8 are ineligible to be employed as a peace officer in the State of California.

The testing process takes approximately two to three months to complete depending on each applicant’s individual background.

6 Month Eligibility

Applicants who pass both the written and oral tests will be placed on the Deputy Sheriff-Recruit eligibility list for six months. Rank on the list is determined by the oral board test score and any veteran’s credit for which individual competitors may qualify. Applicants’ scores are grouped into Certification Bands. Scores between 83 to 100 are placed in Band A, scores between 77 to 82.99 are placed in Band B, and scores between 70-76.99 are placed in Band C. Candidates are moved on into the background process from the list. Typically, the Sheriff’s Office administers two Basic Academies per year.

Make Your Service Count

Veterans who have received an honorable discharge and disabled veterans may be allowed an additional 5% of their total earned score (providing the exam is otherwise successfully completed). To obtain this credit, veterans MUST provide a DD214 that indicates the applicant received an honorable discharge or proof of disability ATTACHED TO THEIR APPLICATION AT THE TIME OF FILING.


200th Basic Academy

Orientation: February 15, 2024

Academy Starts: February 26, 2024

Academy Graduation: August 23, 2024

201st Basic Academy

Orientation: June 10, 2024

Academy Starts: July 8, 2024

Academy Graduation: January 10, 2025

202nd Basic Academy

Orientation: TBD

Academy Starts: November 25, 2024

Academy Graduation: May 30, 2025



Prep Early For Best Results

Candidates that possess the minimum qualifications will advance in the recruitment process for Deputy Sheriff Recruit. For the written examination, candidates have two options for testing:

  •  (a) participate in the POST PELLETB with Contra Costa County or submit a valid, passing, PELLETB score dated within the last 12 months prior to the date of application, or 
  • (b) demonstrate that you have participated in NTN Frontline Law Enforcement Written Examination dated within the last 12 months prior to the date of application. 


Please see the following tabs for more information on each test.

P.O.S.T. Entry-Level Law Enforcement Test Battery (PELLETB)

Candidates that possess the minimum qualifications, and do not possess a qualifying score from either test option, will be invited to participate in the PELLETB. The PELLETB is a multiple-choice, fill-in-the-blank written examination designed to measure reading and writing ability. The Contra Costa County Office of the Sheriff administers this examination monthly with no charge. Candidates MAY NOT retake the PELLETB within 30 days of previously taking the examination.

Applicants are given 2.5 hours to complete the PELLETB, which contains five sections: Spelling (applicants select the correct spelling of a word from a list of options); Vocabulary (applicants select the correct meaning of a word from a list of options); Clarity (applicants select the sentence that is most clearly written from a pair of options); Reading Comprehension (applicants read a passage and answer questions about the passage’s content); and CLOZE (applicants use contextual clues to complete a passage that contains blanks/missing words). 

If you have previously taken the PELLETB with Contra Costa County, or another agency, within the last 12 months AND achieved a T-Score of 44 or higher, you may submit your T-Score in lieu of taking the exam again. Candidates must submit a copy of their examination results AT THE TIME OF APPLICATION).

National Testing Network (NTN) Frontline Law Enforcement Written Examination

National Testing Network (NTN) Frontline Law Enforcement Written Examination: Passing scores accepted for this exam are Video-65% or higher; Reading-70% or higher; and Writing-70% or higher. Applicants must complete the Public Safety Job Suitability Assessment (PSSA) component of the NTN examination battery at the time of the Frontline Law Enforcement Written examination. This examination is administered directly by the National Testing Network and the candidates pay a fee to take this examination. The test may be taken virtually or in person at testing sites throughout the country.

Start Conditioning Now

You need to be in good physical condition to complete the Physical Agility test so you should begin to prepare immediately. The agility test consists of:

25 sit ups (1:00 Minute) 

25 push-ups (2:00 Minutes)

50 air squats (2:00 Minutes)

500-yard run (2:00 Minutes)

Physical Agility Examination Waiver: Applicants who have participated in the POST Work Sample Test Battery (WSTB) at an agency within the State of California within 6 months of the application may waive the physical agility examination portion of the examination process. Applicants must submit the official verification letter of test results AT THE TIME OF APPLICATION by uploading the document online during the application process. The minimum passing score required is 320.

Oral Board Interview

Upon successful completion of the Physical Agility, applicants will be scheduled for an oral board interview which will evaluate such job-related factors as motivation, interpersonal skills, problem-solving ability, use of sound judgment and oral communication skills. This interview is usually scheduled within two weeks of the written and physical agility test dates.

Tentative Recruit Testing Dates

Jan 6, 2024Jan 20, 2024Feb 3, 2024
Feb 17, 2024Mar 2, 2024Mar 16, 2024
Mar 30, 2024Apr 13, 2024Apr 27, 2024
May 11, 2024May 25, 2024Jun 8, 2024
Jun 22, 2024Jul 6, 2024Jul 20, 2024
Aug 3, 2024Aug 17, 2024Aug 31, 2024
Sep 14, 2024Sep 28, 2024Oct 12, 2024
Oct 26, 2024Nov 9, 2024Dec 7, 2024

We're looking for great people to join our teams.

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