Issues at the BCSO:

Extreme overtime, understaffing, and the high turnovers at the BSCO has been a major focus at the Bexar County Jail. The excessive overtime is subjecting Detention Officers working 16-hour days per week totaling 72-80 hours in one week. The stress, poor health, and low morale is creating serious problems for the deputies, both at work and in their personal life.

Most importantly, in examining a Job Satisfaction Study conducted by Speedlin and McKenzie (2020) for the the Bexar County Deputy Sheriff’s Association (DSABC), the issues posed that the personnel shortages at the time revealed 238 vacancies within the BCSO Detention Division. The BCSO had 673 positions filled. At present, these openings have steadily increased above 350 which undoubtedly according to the survey showed that the deputies under this current sheriff are significantly less satisfied in their jobs and are continuing to work under extreme pressures.

The survey further revealed low morale (tension, exhaustion, impairment, discipline among other things under their current leadership) due to the policies about Mandatory Overtime (MOT), Forced Mandatory Overtime, (FMOT), and Forced No Relief (FNR), among the deputies of all positions (Law Enforcement (LE) and Detention Officers (DO).

Significant in the Speedlin and McKenzie (2020) survey, about challenges/negative impact on job satisfaction, the respondents revealed the following:


Policy Issues Impacting Women


“One time when I needed to change shifts, [REDACTED] had told me, “It is not my problem what you are going through.” – “Oh, you’re pregnant? Women, were meant for making kids, staying home and being in the kitchen. Not working in law enforcement.” – “you all are just a number.”

“I was forced to go on FMLA due to 24 hours of overtime. My husband is paraplegic, and I am his primary care giver and before I went on FMLA his health severely declined due to me constantly working. To some LT’s my FMLA wasn’t good enough and was forced to do overtime so I had to add an 8-hour work restriction.”

“Being forced to work large amounts of overtime every week takes a toll on my mental health I feel distant from my family. I’m unable to attend family gatherings or holiday events due to the lack of staffing that I have no control over at the jail.”

“I’m tired of working! I’ve doubled my alcohol intake due to Bexar County sheriff office.”

“I think overall mental health of deputies has become a secondary concern. Time away from work is limited in possibility and in some work environments stress levels are too high.” 

“My over mental and physical health have diminished due to the overtime that I am forced to work at with BCSO. I have no time for college, family, or to work out and maintain a healthy lifestyle.” “It is incredibly unhealthy the lack of sleep we are allowed to get regularly and it is criminal how little sleep people get who are trying to get their peace officers license. Often people sleep once every 2 or three days for 3-4 hours.”

For a more in-depth look at the survey, please take the time to review and read the DSABC Survey it’s disheartening to see what’s really going on inside.

None working and broken cell door locks on inmate cell doors is a major Officer safety and inmate safety issue, how did the jail pass inspection by TCJS with over 400 door locks broken? How many officers and inmates were assaulted due to inoperable door locks? Regular inspection of locks is a major safety issue.

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Chief Dennis Casillas

For Bexar County Sheriff 2024

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