PINE BLUFF, Ark. — In honor of International Women’s Day, KARK4 is recognizing a woman who made history in Jefferson County.
Jametta Harper, former Jefferson County Deputy, reflects on her service after she made history as the first female deputy in Jefferson County.
“It meant that females were breaking the barrier, not just me, myself but the rest of us, those women and young girls who had aspirations to be in law enforcement,” Harper said.
After more than 15 years of service, Harper is a part of the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office’s Women History Month showcase.
The Arkansas native is a trailblazer for breaking barriers in law enforcement for women.
“It’s been a pleasure being in law enforcement, the years I have been in it,” Harper said.
On November 1st, 1995, while in her thirties, Harper made history as the first female deputy in Jefferson County.
“It was a big step,” Harper said. “And I thought about it, prayed about it and I said ‘okay, I’m going to do this thing.”
She was later promoted to sergeant in Transport and Service Division.
Harper credits her training when it comes to dealing with issues when out on patrol alone
“You find yourself in situations, sometimes hair raising but you handle it because you got the training,” Harper said.
Climbing the ladder of success Wasn’t easy — but she worked hard. Harper retired in 2012. She also offered advice to other women who hope to join the force.
“Go to college, get a degree and go into law enforcement,” Harper said. “If we had more educated officers, I think that we may not have as many problems as have today because going through college, you’re taught ethics.”