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Few women seek the profession of law enforcement and even less stay until retirement. In Crossing the Line, the eighth woman ever to retire from the Fairfax County Police Department in Virginia offers an in-depth glimpse into her life as a female police officer. When Connie Novak was hired by the Fairfax County Police in 1979, there were 700 sworn officers, of which just thirty were women. As Novak chronicles the good and the evil, the lighthearted and the insane, the humorous and the sad, she allows others to see what really goes on behind the yellow police tape. From boot camp where she was clobbered with a right hook and learned how to shoot a handgun and shotgun, to the bulletproof vest that made her look like Dolly Parton, to the gun belt that bruised her hips on a regular basis, Novak tells a fascinating story of how she balanced a shift-based career where personal sacrifice is expected with the demands of motherhood where little people depended on her for everything. Crossing the Line offers a compelling look into an honorable profession where officers must be lifesavers, marriage counselors, judges, and parents—all while keeping their emotions in check. This is real life.

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