JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office this weekend will welcome its first female homicide sergeant in its 55-year history.
JSO Sgt. Carly Reed will join the growing list of women rising ranks in the agency as supervisors.
“I’m absolutely ready. I am welcoming a new challenge,” Reed said when News4JAX sat down Wednesday with her and two other trailblazers who have vowed to help her continue to thrive.
The days of policework being a man’s job are in the rearview mirror. Women are not only excelling — they are leading in local agencies.
“People tend to look at women as being a little bit more on the emotional side of things, and I think that that will help when it comes to relating to the victims more or their families. They’re grieving,” Reed said. “And I think that bringing a woman into the fold with that might just deepen that connection with them.”
The Jacksonville native has certainly paid her dues. She joined in 2008, worked patrol for nearly a decade, became a detective in robbery and eventually a supervisor.
Among Reed’s friends and mentors are two other leaders: JSO Chief of Patrol Jaime Eason and JSO Chief of Patrol Services Jennifer Short. They are the first in their positions, and together, they supervise more than a thousand officers and support staff, optimistic someday Reed will follow in their footsteps.
“My advice is to lead by example,” Short said. “There are so many opportunities within the agency, and I think in recent years, we’ve seen that a lot of those opportunities are opening up to women because we are just as proficient in the job as a man.”
“You’ve been in their seat, you know, what they go through, you know, the long hours that they have to go through,” Eason said. “And I would say, you know, make sure that you’re with them at all times during their investigation and make sure that they’re doing the right thing and well for the agency.”
Jacksonville is plagued by violence. With 165 homicides last year, according to News4JAX records, detectives have no shortage of cases and challenges. Reed pledges to work to solve every single case she gets — not just the high-profile ones.
“Every single case gets the same, the same amount of time and same amount of diligence from everybody involved,” Reed said. “There’s no one case that’s more important than the other.”
It’s certainly not a glamorous job, but it’s an important one. Homicide detectives have to see the worst of the worst, putting their best foot forward to catch killers.
“I’m excited to see where we can push the envelope going forward to just make better cases and solid cases and just ultimately for the justice of the community,” Reed said.