Jennifer Gudaitis


What made you want to become a police officer?

I entered the work force by joining the United States Navy out of high school.  I was a Cryptologist, which was mainly working with Information Technology (IT).  When I separated after four years of service, I stuck with what was comfortable and continued to work in the IT field to include taking a job in New York City. I knew this wasn’t my future and moved back to Prince William County to be with my family. When I moved back, I chose a career that would challenge me, provide stability, and serve a purpose greater than myself.

Are there other members of your family who work in law enforcement?

Yes, my husband is a Crash Investigator for the County. His father (my father in law) is a Lieutenant, Commander of Administrative Services for the Hampton, NH, Police Department. I also have a sister, who is a police officer in Saco, Maine.

How did you come to choose Prince William County?

This is my home, I grew up in Manassas.  Prince William County was the only agency I wanted to work for and the only agency I applied with.

What do you like best about working as a Police Officer?

The constant change in roles you play from day to day.  One day you’re a “counselor,” giving advice, the next day you’re arresting the bad guy, and the following day you could be giving a speech to high school students.

What surprised you most about the job?

The never ending out pouring of support from the community.  Prince William County loves its police officers and I was surprised to see how much support there is within my own community, even during uncertain times.

What would surprise people about you?

People would be surprised that, despite what I do, I actually hate confrontation.

What would you tell people who are thinking of becoming a Police Officer in Prince William County?

The department you work for makes all the difference in your success. Prince William County has the leadership and stability to provide for a successful career.  However, you have to sure your desire is to be here, for good times and bad. You have to want this.

What is the biggest misconception about your job?

The biggest misconception is that this job is not as dramatic as you see on T.V.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

I have made friendships and met people throughout my time here that are irreplaceable.

What is your typical day like?

When I was a Special Victims Unit detective, I would investigate crimes of sexual and physical abuse of both children and adults.  On any given day, I was responsible for investigating at least five cases at a time.  This involved conducting interviews of both victims and offenders, attempting to locate witnesses, conducting background investigations, working with Child Protective Services, going to court, and conducting case review with the prosecutors. I was always very busy but it was also very rewarding.

What are some of the things you like to do when you’re not on duty? (hobbies, interests, etc.)

I enjoy time with my family most of all. Prince William County always has family friendly events to attend, which makes it easy to get out and find something new to explore.

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