Orleans County Sheriff Jennifer Harlow shared details from the department for the previous year.
With the help of area law enforcement, ambulance services, fire services, towing services, and other community members, the department provided over 110 gifts to children during Birthday Parades.
Deputy Phil Brooks resigned in February 2020. Deputy Kyle Ingalls and Deputy Chase Walters joined Custom and Border Protection. Sergeant Tyler Jacobs and K-9 Jonah went to the Department of Motor Vehicle Enforcement Division with the State of Vermont.
New deputies are: Andrew Gonyaw as a full-time Patrol Deputy; Kirsten Kingsley who works court security, patrol and was assigned to the State’s Attorney’s Office working with a grant to further investigate crimes; she’ll also be finishing out this school year at Lake Region as the School Resource Officer; Corey Marcoux, State Transport Deputy, promoted to corporal and working part-time; Paul Barnard, School Resource Officer at North Country Union High School; Jesse Testut, former school resource officer who is working part-time.
The Orleans Sheriff’s Department was able to bring Richard Wells on the department as a sergeant. Sergeant Wells comes with 13 years of law enforcement experience, is a Field Training Officer, Death Investigator, NHTSA Radar Instructor, Advanced Roadside Impairment Enforcement and certified DUI Checkpoint Supervisor. Sgt. Wells worked for Newport Police Department before he accepted a position with the Lamoille County Sheriff’s Department for a short period of time.
The department’s partnership with the Newport Restorative Justice Board continues by maintaining a “Drug Take Back” box in the department’s lobby. About 167.5 pounds of prescriptions were collected in 2020.
In December the Sheriff’s department celebrated the 13th anniversary of “Operation Santa.” The program helped bring a happy holiday season to over 283 school children. It was the highest number of children supported in the program’s history.
The Orleans County Sheriff’s Department has 24/7 dispatching. A sheriff’s department dispatcher works Monday through Friday. The rest of the time, Newport Police Department handles dispatching.
In June, 2019, the Family Court Security position was relinquished by this department and this year 2021, we have been able to fill the Family Court Security position.
Among seven grants assisting the department with operations, one was used to buy an ATV to help with community patrols.
In January, the department changed over to a reporting system that will help provide contracted towns with detailed monthly reports.
Sheriff Harlow noted her involvement in community support organizations. She is on the Orleans County Child Advocacy Board. She took part in the hiring of the new Executive Director at the Vermont Criminal Justice Council. She is on the Training Advisory Committee with the Vermont Criminal Justice Council. She is on the Prevention Center of Excellence Advisory Council, which was just granted $450,000 which is a one-year grant and the goals are to reduce, high-risk alcohol consumption, underage drinking, prescription drug and stimulant misuse, illicit stimulants and opioids as well as marijuana and tobacco misuses.
The sheriff is involved in a Consolidated Youth Grant which consists of Lake Region Union High School and Umbrella and involves helping youth facing domestic/sexual violence.
Together with the county’s side judges a county budget was created to help with department building improvements. In the spring there will be a security fence put around the property. The department is also upgrading the radio system.
In 2019, the Orleans County Sheriff’s Department had 1,899 Law Incidents; 156 Arrests; 518 Tickets that were issued and 590 Written Warnings.
In 2020, the Orleans County Sheriff’s Department had 3,022 Law Incidents; 213 Arrests; 475 Tickets and 658 Written Warnings.