Jason Herr with PAAF President, Jessica Welker.
Jason was hired at SJPD in December 1994. He was promoted to Sergeant in 2011 and to Lieutenant in 2014. During the course of his career, Jason has worked patrol, Narcotics Enforcement Team, Metro, Megan’s Law/290 Unit, Sexual Assaults Investigative Unit, Child Exploits, Field Training Officer, Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, Family Violence Unit, Missing Persons/Juvenile, and the Field Training Program Administrative Unit.
Jason joined PAAF as a brand-new officer and soon got talked into training for the “Toughest Cop Alive” competition at the Police Olympics. The TCA is a decathlon-style event consisting of eight exercises: 5K run, shot put, 100 meter dash, 100 yard swim, bench press, 20’ rope climb, pull ups, and obstacle course.
Jason competed in his first TCA in the 1996 Police Olympics in Long Beach and surprised himself by winning gold. He also set a new record for the open division. He competed in TCA the following year in Fresno and won another gold. In 1998, Jason took a break from the individual TCA competition and competed in the TCA Mixed Doubles with fellow PAAF Hall of Famer Donna Arndt-Backman. Together they earned a silver medal. In 1999, Jason competed again in the individual TCA at the Police Olympics held in Pasadena and took silver.
That same year, Jason competed in his first World Police & Fire Games which were held in Stockholm, Sweden. He won a bronze medal in the TCA and a silver medal in the bench press. Jason fell in love with the World Games experience and vowed to one day earn a gold medal in the TCA at a World Games.
In 2000, Jason competed in the Police Olympics in San Bernardino which he once again won the gold in TCA and set an all-time state record. This record stood for 15 years until the scoring format changed in 2015.
In 2001, Jason finally met his goal of earning a gold medal in the TCA at a World Games when the competition was held in Indianapolis, Indiana. He also set a new world record in his division. He competed in the California Police Olympics that same year and earned a silver in the TCA.
Figuring he was the “toughest cop alive,” Jason decided to try his luck at boxing. He entered the boxing competition at the 2002 Police Olympics in Santa Ana and quickly learned that being the toughest cop alive provides no significant benefit to boxing. He took last place but said stepping into the boxing ring was one of his proudest moments of his police athletic career.
Jason redeemed himself at those same Police Olympics by winning gold in the bench press and setting a new division record that held until 2016.
Jason went on to compete in the 2003 & 2004 Police Olympics earning a silver in the bench press (2003) and a gold in the Team TCA (2004). In 2005, Jason tried another new sport at the Police Olympics, which by now were called the Western States Police & Fire Games. He competed in the whitewater rafting and earned a bronze medal. Jason returned to the TCA competition at the 2008 Western States Police & Fire Games in Boise, Idaho earning a silver medal as well as two gold medals in kayaking.
In 2008, Jason competed in a different competition called Eppie’s Great Race. It’s a “no-swim” triathlon which consists of running, biking, and kayaking. He got tired of hearing a Sacramento Police Department Deputy Chief gloat about winning the Firefighter/Police Division so Jason recruited two SJPD teammates, one of which was fellow inductee Brian Winco, and entered the competition. In Jason’s words, they “crushed” Sacramento Police Department and won first place.
Jason’s final World Police & Fire Games competition was in 2011 in New York City where he competed in the push/pull (bench press + deadlift) and won a gold. After two major injuries and surgeries, Jason decided to cut back on his competitions and instead spend his time motivating younger SJPD officers to get involved with the Police Olympics. Two years ago, he founded the SJPD Dodgeball team and acts as the team advisor when they compete at the Police Olympics. He plans on competing with the team next year.
In all, Jason earned a total of 19 medals at the World Police & Fire Games and Police Olympics.
For his outstanding TCA, weightlifting, and kayaking achievements, Jason Herr is inducted into the PAAF Hall of Fame.