Fulton County's first female sniper makes history

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There's a new sharpshooter at the Fulton County Sheriff's Office.

Deputy Lashira Norwood is making history as the county's first female sniper.

She said that she just kept practicing sniping and "it was just natural."

Norwood spends her weekends at a Fulton County gun range hitting targets, sniping, and honing her craft.

MORE: Deputy becomes Fulton County's first female sniper

"I'm just constantly working and working and working," she said. "It's really loud but I kind of like it!"

It took a year to get used to the Remington sniper rifle. She had been so used to handguns that it's kind of a tricky transition. But Norwood already had the mindset needed to succeed already in place.

"With this, it's kind of the same thing as sports to me," she said. "You have to put in the work, you have to be dedicated, you have to actually put in the time.

She's a SWAT team operator for the Fulton County Sheriff's Office, but something about the precision and stillness needed in sharpshooting appealed to her.

So Norwood went to sniper school, where she graduated at the top of her class as the only female there.

And now she's the first female sniper in the department. But she didn't do it alone. She told FOX 5 that she wouldn't be here without her team cheering her on.

"They supported me along the way," she says. "When I was gone at school, they texted every day. 'Be strong, stay focused.'"

Norwood says there's a method to hitting her mark:

"You have to relax and slow down your heart rate. So when you are lying down, you don't have that heartbeat shaking you. That's where the deep breaths come in. Exhale everything out of your lungs and in that half second - that's when you take that shot."

This sniper certification validates all of Norwood's hard work and determination. And she hopes that it inspires other young women considering a law enforcement career.

"I like the fact that they have somebody that looks like them, is shaped like them, that can do the things they maybe want to do," she said.

She's still striving to improve too. Norwood plans on entering some shooting competitions to keep working on her sharpshooter skills.