KOOTENAI COUNTY, Idaho --- A new grant is helping the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office find jobs for military veterans.
The department received a federal grant 18 months ago. The grant paid for the salaries and benefits for five new deputies who recently served in the military.
“If we didn’t have the grant, we wouldn’t have the positions at all,” said Lieutenant Stu Miller. “So these five positions are five people we didn’t have.”
Deputy Eric Breakie is the first deputy hired with the new grant. He served four years of active duty with the Navy. He tried unsuccessfully to find a job as a police officer when he left the Navy in 2011.
“It was extremely difficult,” said Breakie. “I didn’t realize how sought after a law enforcement career is.”
However, Breakie saw an ad the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office posted on Facebook, looking for deputies, and applied. Now he has a badge. The Sheriff’s Department says it’s considering hiring two other deputies with the grant as well.