Former cadet becomes Tustin PD’s first detention officer


Kyle Meyer is set on building a future with the Tustin Police Department.

After three years of serving as an explorer for the Brea Police Department, Meyer came to the Tustin Police Department in July 2018 to start his career as a police cadet.

While working as a cadet, he was assigned to the Professional Standards Division and then in the Property and Evidence Unit.

He wouldn’t be a cadet for long.

After seven months, he was hired as Tustin Police Department’s first detention officer.

“I saw that Tustin was hiring a detention officer and I reflected back at my time at Brea working with their detention officers,” Meyer, 19, said. “I was always interested in being a jailer so, I gave it a shot.”

After applying for the job, passing backgrounds and interviews, Meyer started his five-week adult core corrections course with the Orange County Sheriff’s Department.

The five-week course included getting title 15 certified, learning first-aid, CPR, officer safety, how to interact with inmates, and self-defense.

After successfully completing the core corrections course, his final step was to pass his two-month field training.

“I like being out in the field with the officers because it gives me a lot of experience,” Meyer said. “As a cadet, you’re in the station more so it was cool getting out and being able to learn more from the officers.”

Kyle Meyer, a PSO detention officer with Tustin PD.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge

In July, Meyer passed his field training and was welcomed as Tustin’s first detention officer.

While there is no typical day in the office for him, his job duties can range from citing and releasing arrestees, collecting and processing inmates, and patrolling the detention area. In his down time Meyer does patrol checks around the civic center and parking enforcement throughout the city.

Having a detention officer is extremely beneficial to Tustin police officers because the booking process can take up to two hours.

“As a detention officer, I am able to keep the inmates safe and contained, which allows the officers to get out in the field quicker to do more proactive policing,” Meyer said.

Assisting the officers is not the only thing Meyer loves about his job.

Meyer comes from a law enforcement background; his mom, Tina Meyer, is a communications supervisor for the Brea Police Department and his dad, Chad Meyer, is a pilot for the Anaheim Police Department.

It comes as no surprise that Meyer strives to eventually become a sworn police officer himself and getting to work so closely with the officers gives him an edge.

“My job gives me some insight about policing,” Meyer said. “When I’m on calls with the officers, I get to see how different officers handle different situations. Then I play little scenarios in my head like, ‘How would I handle this and what would I do?’”

Although a detention officer’s role has a lot of benefits, it comes with challenges.

Meyer says getting to know the layout of the city has been challenging and I’ve had to learn how to handle difficult situations with arrestees.   

“One of the first arrestee’s my training officer and I picked up was an angry gentleman,” Meyer said. “He had a warrant for his arrest, so he wasn’t happy about going to jail and he directed some profanity towards us.”

Fortunately, no one was hurt.

Kyle Meyer, a PSO detention officer with Tustin PD.
Photo by Steven Georges/Behind the Badge

I like that Tustin police officers are very professional and officer safety is extremely important to them so they do their job safely, calmly, and collectively,” Meyer said.

When he’s not assisting police officers in the detention facility, Meyer attends Palomar College studying sociology.

While attending college, he hopes to continue to work as a detention officer until he can become a sworn officer.

“I’m very grateful and honored to have this position and to be a part of the Tustin Police Department,” Meyer said. “It’s exciting being able to go out and help and protect people – it’s my passion.”