Volume 430
May 6, 2021
NYSSA Resumes In-person Training Conference
The New York State Sheriffs’ Association Spring Training Conference recently concluded in Albany, NY with two full days of presentations, sheriffs’ roundtables and opportunities to meet with vendors.

Forty Sheriffs, five Undersheriffs and 44 exhibitors participated in the conference, which included an installation ceremony for the new 2021 NYSSA officers, Executive Committee members and Trustees, PLUS, a resumption of the Annual Awards Luncheon by the New York State Sheriffs’ Institute.
Some of the conference presentations are outlined below:



National Sheriffs’ Association Executive Director Jonathon Thompson (pictured) brought greetings from Washington, DC. He warned that in the current anti-police atmosphere, even the most-respected Sheriffs can suddenly see the public turn against them over some event not even under his or her control. He urged Sheriffs to maintain a strong, visible presence on social media platforms that will improve messaging and outreach within their communities.
Dr. Perry Frankel described his work in trying to save First Responders’ lives by bringing his mobile diagnostic facilities to Sheriffs and other police and fire agencies around the state, testing for blockages and aneurysms among their staffs. The program is covered by insurance, and there is no charge to the agency. See more on how to prevent heart attacks and strokes for first responders.
New York State Assemblyman John Salka (above, front row, center) spoke at one of the Sheriffs Roundtables describing his Bill seeking to repeal the current Bail Reform Law.






An Overview of ROCTAC (Rochester Threat Advisory Committee), a multidisciplinary targeted-violence threat advisory program for the Rochester community, was presented by Monroe County Sheriff Todd Baxter (pictured). Sheriff Baxter said that the highly successful program was being adopted by several other counties, and any interested Sheriffs should contact his Office.
The H.E.R.O. – Resiliency Program addresses the wide-spread problem of mental health disorders among public safety personnel due to job stress, and seeks to build officer resilience in response to those stresses. The implementation of this wellness program and how a county could start its own internal-needs audit was explained by Katie Oldakowski of the Mental Health Association of Columbia-Greene Counties and Officer George Hill, CO, of the Ulster County Sheriff’s Office. 

Introduction to C-PASS (Committee on Policing and Safeguarding Schools) Deputy Robert Holt, Livingston County Sheriff’s Office (pictured, right) and Michael Gaita, Oswego County Sheriff’s Office, provide a summary of the new Committee’s organization, mission and goal to serve as a statewide forum for School Resource Officers and School Resource Deputies.



Rudolf Hall (pictured, right), Assistant Chief of the recently formed Office of Special Investigations (OSI) within the New York State Attorney General’s Office, explains to Sheriffs the new guidelines for investigations of officer-involved deaths, which apply regardless of whether the decedent was armed or unarmed, and regardless of whether the officer was on or off duty. Behind Chief Hall is Mitch Paurowski, Upstate Investigations Supervisor for the OSI.
Ulster County’s Oracle Program (Opioid Response as County Law Enforcement), which earned the Innovative Program of the Year Award from the Sheriffs’ Institute last year, has expanded its program under a grant, and Ulster County Sheriff’s staff – Lt. Chad Storey, CO Wilbur Purtzman, and Opioid Use Disorder Specialist Juliahna Abumbola Ogundimu – explained the successful program and how it might be adopted in other Sheriffs’ Offices
NYSSA Leadership for 2021 Installed (Finally)
The conference luncheon on April 27 included a ceremony to recognize outgoing NYSSA President Jeff Murphy and incoming President Dave Bartlett, and welcomed the sheriffs inducted as officers, Executive Committee members and Trustees of the Association.





From Leader to Leader – Outgoing NYSSA President Jeff Murphy (l) passes the ceremonial gavel to 2021 Association President Dave Bartlett.
Ready to Serve – During the luncheon, NYSSA’s 2021 Officers, Executive Committee Members and Trustees (above) take the oath for their new roles.

First row (l – r), Sheriffs Whitcomb, DuMond, Helms, Cutting, Maciol and Giardino.
Second row (l – r), Sheriffs Dougherty, Quattrone, Whitney, O’Neill, Bartlett, Figueroa and Falco.
Awards Conferred by the NYS Sheriffs' Institute
Deputy of the Year_______________________________________________

Three people were recognized as Deputy of the Year, including Livingston County Undersheriff Matthew Bean (center). Pictured showing their congratulations (l – r) are Yates County Sheriff Ron Spike, Institute Board Chairman; Livingston County Sheriff Thomas Dougherty; Chenango County Sheriff Ernest Cutting, NYSSA Executive Committee Chair; and NYSSA President Dave Bartlett, Columbia County Sheriff.



Orange County Sheriff’s Office Investigator John O’Brien was also selected to receive the Deputy of the Year Award. Accepting on behalf of Investigator O’Brien is Orange County Sheriff Carl DuBois, shown between NYSSA President Bartlett and Institute Chairman Spike.
The third awardee is Detective Mark Grady of the Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office. He will receive the award at a ceremony to be held at a later date in Onondaga County.
Sheriff Carl Draxler Award__________________________________________
Lieutenant Joseph Decker (second from right) of the Ulster County Sheriff’s Office was presented with the Sheriff Carl Draxler Award in recognition of exceptional achievement over the course of his career. Along with Lt. Decker (l – r) are Sheriffs Cutting and Spike, Ulster County Sheriff Juan Figueroa and NYSSA President Dave Bartlett.
Innovative Program Award_________________________________________
The Albany County Sheriff’s Office brought home two awards in this category, for its Homeless Improvement Program and Emergency Mobile Immunizations. Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple (third from right) is joined by members of his staff and Sheriff Cutting, Sheriff Bartlett and Sheriff Spike.
Court Officer of the Year___________________________________________






Deputy Jamie Gauthier of the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office (center) holds a plaque honoring her as Court Officer of the Year, for her outstanding work in helping her agency respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. Monroe County Sheriff Todd Baxter (left) and Chief Marvin Patterson flank Deputy Gauthier.
Correction Officer of the Year_______________________________________
Officer Paul Moore (center) of the Delaware County Sheriff’s Office was presented with the 2021 Correction Officer of the Year Award for demonstrating exceptional dedication and leadership. Also pictured are (l – r) Sheriff Cutting, Delaware County Sheriff Craig DuMond, Sheriff Bartlett and Sheriff Spike.
President Ronald Regan Domestic Violence Award______________________





Edmund Wutzer (pictured, right) of Loudonville, NY was the second recipient of the President Ronald Regan Domestic Violence Award for his many years of service developing victim-assistance programs and highlighting the need for improved resources to combat domestic violence.
Recognized for Service and Professionalism___________________________



In a fitting tribute, Wayne County Sheriff Barry Virts (second from left) was recognized with a special award for his more than four decades of service and “his steadfast dedication to upholding the integrity and professionalism of the Office of Sheriff.” Sheriff Virts will not seek reelection when his term ends at the end of the year. All the best to Sheriff Virts and his family!
More News . . . Celebrating . . .
National Corrections Officers Week | May 2 - 8
National Police Week | May 9 - 15
The New York State Sheriffs’ Association joins its voice with law-enforcement agencies across the nation, thanking correctional and police officers everywhere for their unswerving commitment and dedication . . . those who risk their lives and their livelihoods daily to protect the citizens they have sworn to serve. Thank you!
Social Media Guru – Delaware County Sheriff Craig DuMond (second from the right) and social media expert Jessica Vecchione (second from the left) presented Executive Director Kehoe with ideas for improving NYSSA’s social media presence at a recent meeting. Ed Wutzer (left) heard lunch would be served, and dropped by for a visit.
Livingston County Sheriff’s Office Celebrates its 200th Anniversary

In addition to the Sheriffs’ Offices noted in the last edition of File 25 that recently celebrated their bicentennials, the Livingston County Sheriff’s Office earlier this year also joined the ranks of those serving its citizens for over 200 years. As noted on its Facebook page:
 
Happy 200th Birthday (February 23, 2021) to Livingston County and the founding of the Livingston County Sheriff's Office!
 
In honor of the occasion, members of the Livingston County Sheriff’s Office donned new 200th Anniversary badges (pictured). Sheriff Dougherty thanked all the members of his team for their service and also recognized the People of his county: “We also recognize the best folks we could ever have for bosses – our county residents. You are simply the best partners in public safety. Happy 200th!"    
Livingston County SWAT Team Certification
Livingston County is also celebrating certification of its SWAT Team, a unit undreamed of 200 years ago. “The certification of our SWAT Team as a state-accredited tactical team was a long-term team goal that took years to accomplish, but has been worth the time and energy,” said Sheriff Dougherty. “I commend the entire SWAT team on this great accomplishment and give special recognition to Chief Deputy Jason Yasso who is the Command Staff administrator to the team, former SWAT Commander Michael Williams, and current SWAT Commander Scott Patterson.”
 
The Livingston County Sheriff’s Office is one of only two SWAT teams in the state comprising a hybrid team of Deputy Sheriffs assigned to both the Police Services Bureau and the Correctional Services Bureau. It is the only team in the state to achieve accreditation certification as such with the makeup of tactical members across multiple divisions on both the police and corrections sides.
Ready to Roll – The newly accredited Livingston County Sheriff’s Office SWAT team.

Front Row (l - r): Captain Michael Williams, Deputy Gordy Truax, Captain Ryan Swanson, Deputy Mitchell McGee, Chief Deputy Aaron Galvin, Deputy Menzo Peck, Deputy Becky Kane, Deputy Laszlo Babocsi, Sergeant James Merrick, Sergeant Scott Patterson

Back Row: Deputy Michael Phillips, Deputy Bryan Mann, Deputy Rick Gage, Corporal Randy Newton, Senior Dispatcher Matt Snyder, Deputy Jeff Faugh, Corporal Zachary Scott, Investigator Matt Orman, Deputy Michael Wade.
Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office START Program Expands and Receives Corporate Boost







Forging Stronger Community Ties – Suffolk County Sheriff Errol Toulon, Jr., addresses attendees at the opening of its new START satellite location.
Suffolk County Sheriff Errol D. Toulon, Jr., was joined by corporate, municipal and educational representatives to announce a new satellite location for the Sheriff's Transition and Reentry Team (START) Resource Center satellite location, made possible by a contribution from AT&T.
 
The START Resource Center offers a range of practical transitional services for people leaving the county jail, including employment assistance, connections to housing, treatment and mental healthcare, clothing, food and pandemic advice. The expansion of services to a second location represents Sheriff Toulon's vision to bring transitional services directly into communities and closer to families affected by justice-system involvement.
Road and Traffic Safety
Sheriff Spike Presented with NYSATSB’s Thorpe Award
Keep on Trucking . . . Carefully – Tom Weeks (r), President of the New York State Association of Traffic Safety Boards, presents Yates County Sheriff Ron Spike with the 2020 Roy Thorpe Award.
The New York State Association of Traffic Safety Boards (NYSATSB) awarded its 2020 Roy Thorpe Award to Yates County Sheriff Ron Spike.
 
Sheriff Spike has served as an advocate for rural road safety, with a focus on slow moving vehicles, by developing strong relationships with the agricultural and Old-Order Mennonite communities. The Sheriff developed a Slow Moving Vehicle (SMV) Highway Safety presentation that highlights farm and agriculture equipment, and horse and buggy traffic, delivering this presentation over the years to highway safety advocates and traffic safety boards across New York State. 
 
He was also a major contributor to the Slow Moving Vehicles’ Guide to Sharing the Road booklet, the first publication of its kind through the New York State Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee, with funding from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Rounding Out the File
Kangaroo Capture by Cayuga County Cop
A Hoppy Ending – The two-foot high “Joey” kangaroo (left) is back safe and sound in its owner’s arms after a rescue by Yates County Deputy Scott Walker.
 
 
Last month, a young, female “joey” kangaroo was captured after reported missing by her owner.
 
Although scared, cold and hungry, she appeared uninjured.
 
A large-scale search involving nearly 50 volunteers combed an abandoned vineyard. The Joey was sighted and surrounded, and Yates County Deputy Sheriff Deputy Scott Walker made the safe capture by securing the animal with a blanket.
 
Sheriff Ron Spike said, "The Sheriff’s Office thanks the approximately 40 to 50 volunteers assisting in the lost area vicinity, the forming a circle during capture, as well as all the calls received."
Our Diamond Partners
 New York State Sheriffs' Association | 518-434-9091 | www.nysheriffs.org