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Genesee County Sheriff's Office

November 1, 2021 - 6:55pm
posted by Press Release in news, Genesee County Sheriff's Office.

Press release:

Due to COVID-19 cases within the Genesee County Jail, Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr. is suspending all visitations effective at midnight tonight until Nov. 22, tentatively.

This is a precautionary measure to prevent the risk of exposure to the novel coronavirus to incarcerated individuals’ families and employees.  

October 7, 2021 - 10:04am

The Genesee County Legislature’s Ways & Means Committee on Wednesday threw its support behind a pair of local laws designed to relax residency requirements for the county’s seasonal and laterally transferring sheriff’s deputies.

County Attorney Kevin Earl, at the committee’s meeting at the Old County Courthouse, introduced resolutions calling for adoption of local laws that would supersede Section 3(1) of the New York State Public Officer Law.

Section 3(1) of the Public Officer Law states that no person shall be capable of holding a civil office, which includes deputy sheriffs, unless at the time he or she shall be chosen for employment they are a permanent resident of the political subdivision or municipal corporation of the state for which he or she shall be chosen (in this case, Genesee County).

In the area of seasonal deputies, Local Law Introductory No. 4, Year 2021 would expand the residency territorial area to include Erie, Niagara, Orleans, Monroe, Livingston and Wyoming counties.

Seasonal sheriff’s deputies are defined as those hired for a fixed period of time not to exceed 90 days to work for a specific purpose, and must be fully trained with New York State Police Officer certification.

“A lot of this is driven by (Six Flags) Darien Lake needing additional employees,” Earl said.

Genesee County Undersheriff Brad Mazur said that permanent county sheriff’s deputies would be considered first for seasonal security work at Darien Lake, followed by seasonal deputies who live in Genesee County.

“Then, if we still couldn’t fill it, we would go outside to the contiguous counties,” he said, adding that two or three City of Batavia Police officers provided coverage at the theme park last year.

All costs for these seasonal deputies are covered by Darien Lake, Mazur said.

Concerning lateral transfers, Local Law Introductory No. 5, Year 2021 would expand the permanent residency requirement timeframe for a lateral police officer transfer to a Genesee County deputy sheriff position “to ensure an adequate pool of qualified applicants” by giving transfers six months after their hiring date to find a home in Genesee County.

Qualifications include current employment as a fully trained and certified police officer in New York and meeting all requirement of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office.

Earl said that the mandate to reside in Genesee County within six months would be a condition of the deputy’s employment, meaning that the deputy could be fired outside of an arbitration process if the requirement is not met.

Previously, the county stipulated that transferring officers had to live in Genesee for two months before beginning employment.

Both Local Laws require public hearings, which have been scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Oct. 27 at the Old County Courthouse.

September 23, 2021 - 8:20am

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Genesee County Sheriff William Sheron Jr. was a man of few words on Wednesday afternoon as he accepted a proclamation from the Genesee County Legislature designating the week of Sept. 19-25, 2021 as Sheriffs’ Week in Genesee County.

Those words were well placed, however, as the county’s top law enforcement official gave all the credit to his staff who are on the front lines each and every day.

“I consider it a privilege to serve as sheriff in Genesee County and to be associated with such tremendous people before me (acknowledging Maha, the former sheriff, and Legislator Gordon Dibble, retired chief deputy),” Sheron said.

“I take this on behalf of all the men and women of the Sheriff’s Office. They’re the ones that are out there daily, providing service to the public, and they do it in such a professional manner.”

Maha, chair of the Public Service Committee, read the proclamation, which recognizes the Sheriff’s Office as “an integral part of the criminal justice system in New York State and in Genesee County since its inception in 1777, and establishment as one of the original constitutional offices of Genesee County in 1802.”

The proclamation states that the “Office of Sheriff has evolved into a modern, professionally accredited, full-service law enforcement and public safety agency, manned by fully trained police and peace officers, as well as civilians, using state-of-the-art technology and applying the latest and most-advanced theories and practices in the criminal justice field.”

Photo by Mike Pettinella.

September 1, 2021 - 7:07pm

stop_dwi_logo.pngThe Genesee County Legislature’s Ways & Means Committee this afternoon recommended approval of the county’s 2022 STOP-DWI plan that seeks an appropriation of $160,910, but not before the program coordinator highlighted the need for more police officers.

“It’s an amazing program,” Assistant Manager Tammi Ferringer said, thanking personnel from the three participating agencies – County Sheriff’s Office, City of Batavia Police Department and Le Roy Police Department – for their efforts in conducting special details in support of STOP-DWI.

But just as quickly, speaking at the meeting at the Old County Courthouse, she noted “the biggest challenge” was that these departments are short-staffed.

“Each agency needs to be commended for changing their schedules (to work the details),” she said. “The officers really gave their all.”

The three police agencies continue to conduct routine enforcement nights with sobriety checkpoints, often resulting in DWI/DWAI arrests, she said, but noted that primarily due to the COVID-19 pandemic, total DWI arrests dropped from 115 in 2019 to 72 in 2020.

Thus far in 2021, however, arrests are trending upward, prompting Ferringer to believe the yearly total will equal or exceed the 2019 number.

She reported that law enforcement participated in all statewide crackdown events (eight of them in all) during the period of Oct. 1, 2020 through Sept. 30, 2021, making 205 vehicle stops. Furthermore, grant funding was used for callouts of local Drug Recognition Experts to help assist officers investigating impaired driving.

One hundred percent of STOP-DWI’s activities is funded from the collection of fines collected from DWI/DWAI offenses, Ferringer said, noting that many arrests are made during normal operationof law enforcement. STOP-DWI provides enhanced activities.

While she is budgeting for $160,910, the program currently has about $100,000 in its account.

Ferringer reported a decline in revenue from $163,418 in 2020 to (projected) $119,063 this year, but foresees an increase in 2022 as the courts reopen and more and more pending cases are adjudicated.

“There’s a backlog in the courts,” she said, adding that judges are “scared” as they see the caseload before them and try to prepare for the impending rush.

She also informed the committee that New York State is changing its terminology – moving away from “crackdown period” and replacing that with “high visibility engagement campaign.” The Labor Day/End of Summer HVEC is running now, through Sept. 6.

As she wrapped up her presentation, County Legislator Gordon Dibble, who represents the towns of Pembroke and Darien, said the Village of Corfu Police Department may be looking to re-enter the STOP-DWI program.

Ferringer’s budget request is expected to be on the agenda of the full legislature’s next meeting on Sept. 8.

Other program highlights are as follows:

  • Genesee Justice monitors first-time DWI offenders (non-aggravated) who have received a Conditional Discharge as long as they participate in a one-year monitoring program that includes reporting regularly to a case worker, undergoing an alcohol screening and counseling program, refraining from drinking alcohol and taking part in an intense program for behavior modification aimed at changing attitudes on drinking and driving. It also monitors Leandra Law convictions where the ignition interlock device is ordered on the vehicle.

  • Genesee County probation officers provide necessary DWI enforcement activities and enhanced EtG (ethyl glucuronide) alcohol testing for monitored individuals. The department is monitoring an average of 175 DWI offenders per month and has reported 50 violations year to date, which is up slightly from 172 in 2020 with 80 violations amidst pandemic response and shut down.

  • Genesee/Orleans Council on Alcohol and Substance Abuse provide case management services, including an accountability component, follow up to the court and referrals to community resources. GCASA’s Victim Impact Panel brings DWI offenders and victims together for offenders to hear first-hand how a DWI crash impacted the lives of others.

  • STOP-DWI’s education and prevention component includes participation by the Youth Bureau, leading to the use of images of the local law enforcement agencies for a new billboard to remind the community to not drink and drive. The image will also be used in the future for post cards and other educational handouts. Also, it conducted an adult campaign during the winter holiday season, partnering with local liquor stores to provide them with liquor bags with safe messages to remind the community to not drink and drive. In 2020, six liquor stores were provided 5,800 bags.

  • The program’s poster contest winners were acknowledged, as youth and “top cops” were recognized with t-shirts, gift cards, commendations as well as banners with their artwork/pictures on them to display. Brooke Jarkiewicz and Grace Shepard, 11th graders at Byron-Bergen High School were the grand prize winners, and their design was featured on a billboard for a month during the winter holiday season.

  • In July, a “Night at the Ballpark” took place at Dwyer Stadium, supported by the Batavia Muckdogs. Law enforcement personnel joined with county staff and representatives of human services agencies to assist at the heavily attended event.

July 9, 2021 - 4:31pm

Now is an opportune time for individuals who are serious about becoming a law enforcement officer in Genesee County.

Batavia Police Department Chief Shawn Heubusch and Genesee County Sheriff William Sheron have announced that potential candidates for positions at those two agencies can take the civil service examination on either Sept. 18 or Sept. 19. The exact date will be announced.

All applicants must file for the examination with the Genesee County Human Resources Department by Aug. 4.

Heubusch said the Batavia PD currently has one opening, while Sheron said the sheriff’s office is down six deputies.

“We currently have one vacancy,” Heubusch said. “This announcement is for the exam that was supposed to take place last year, but was postponed due to COVID.”

CITY OF BATAVIA PD

Heubusch said the city, as part of the police reform plan submitted to New York State per Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Executive Order, “is committed to working with our local government partners and various groups and organizations in reaching out to the community to promote and publicize these important career opportunities in law enforcement.”

“It’s important that the composition of the police department reflects the community it serves and protects -- and that starts with making people aware that the police exam is coming up.”

Those with questions regarding the hiring process and other information about how to become a police officer can contact the Batavia Police Department by email at [email protected] or by calling (585) 345-6360 and ask to speak with a member of the Recruiting Committee.

GENESEE COUNTY SHERIFF’S

Sheron said that along with the civil service test in September, his office is conducting background checks on three individuals and there is another recruit in basic academy who will graduate in August.

“Being down six hurts us, but we’ve been down this many before,” he said. “The guys all step up, using overtime and so forth.”

The sheriff said it will take quite some time to fully replenish the deputy staff when you consider having to receive the test results and also conduct interviews, background investigations and psychological tests.

“And then we have to put them through the academy, which is a six-month ordeal, so we’re probably looking at nine months to a year before we’re back to full staff,” he advised. “However, we do have a couple people who are considering lateral transfers from other police agencies over to ours.”

LINKS TO PERTINENT INFORMATION

Interested candidates can visit the Genesee County Human Resources Department’s website for more information on how to apply to take the examinations:  https://www.co.genesee.ny.us/departments/humanresources/exams.php

The following links provide information on the physical fitness testing procedures and civil service study guide for entry level police officer exams:

https://www.co.genesee.ny.us/Physical%20Fitness%20Test%20Guidelines.pdf

https://www.co.genesee.ny.us/docs/hr/entry_level_police_officer_test_gui...

Both Heubusch and Sheron emphasized the need for potential candidates to start the training process immediately to be prepared to take the physical agility test after the written civil service exam.

June 28, 2021 - 3:19pm

Genesee County’s director of mental health and community services apparently swung for the fences and hit a home run last week when she learned that the New York State Office of Mental Health approved the county’s application to participate in the Mobile Access Program with three law enforcement agencies.

The Mobile Access Program (MAP) is a pilot initiative that connects residents in distress with mental health clinicians utilizing iPads (via Zoom for Healthcare, a secure teleconferencing software program) when law enforcement officers request assistance.

Mental health staff then will conduct an evaluation remotely to help plan for an appropriate disposition.

“They (NYSOMH officials) really wanted one law enforcement agency but we kind of took a gamble and chose three. We asked for a lot,” said Lynda Battaglia, who heads up the county’s mental health department.

The three police departments that have agreed to partner with Genesee County are the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office, City of Batavia Police and Village of Le Roy Police.

Battaglia said heads of the three law enforcement agencies watched a webinar about the program and all expressed an interest in participating.

“I asked each police department to provide information specific to their line of work – how many devices they would need for each shift; bandwidth, accessibility in different areas; how many officers would need iPads and the number of calls related to mental health issues they receive,” Battaglia offered.

She then took that data and coupled it with mental health information and sent the application to the NYSOMH. Not only was Genesee County approved, but requests from all other counties as well.

“We received notice that since there was such a great response … they were able to accommodate all the applicants,” she noted.

Calling it a “telehealth program,” Battaglia said the state will give iPads to all three police departments and to the mental health clinic. The state also will provide training and support services.

She said that the objective is to increase accessibility to those having mental health issues and cut down the time it takes to deliver essential mental health consultations.

“Let’s say police receive a call to go out and talk with somebody – and it’s a mental health call,” she said. “One of the goals is to decrease unnecessary transport to the hospital, under Mental Health Law 9.41.”

Mental Health Law Section 9.41 give powers to peace officers and police officers to admit individuals in emergency situations for immediate observation, care, and treatment.

Battaglia explained that if an officer is interacting with someone who doesn’t need to be transported to a hospital (or to jail), they will ask that person if they wish to have a telehealth emergency visit with the mental health person on call.

“There will be arrangements made to have the officer connect with his or her iPad with our on-call person with their iPad, and the mental health person will conduct a telehealth session with that individual in crisis,” she said.

She did acknowledge that the program won’t work in all cases, specifically if someone is under the influence of alcohol or substances – “for clinical reasons you won’t get an accurate assessment,” she said – or if a person is extremely agitated or at very high risk.

“We’re hoping to have it where the mental health professionals make that determination (which is allowed under MHL Section 9.45 -- emergency admissions for immediate observation, care, and treatment under the authority of directors of community services or authorized designees).

Genesee County Sheriff William Sheron reported that mental health calls continue to increase.

“I would say we average at least one a day – and some days, more than others,” he said. “That’s why it’s important to get the proper treatment to these individuals in a timely fashion, and reduce the amount of police involvement in the process.”

Sheron said law enforcement is “working hand-in-hand with mental health to more directly address the needs of people who have mental health crises.”

“This will expedite that. It may not be appropriate for all cases, but I think for the majority of them, it will be very beneficial. The last thing we want to do is having law enforcement take some kind of criminal action against somebody when they really need the services of mental health professionals.”

Battaglia said she expects it to take a few months for state mental health officials to provide training and to implement the program. She said is hoping that this turns out to be a win-win situation for all.

“We have a crisis plan in place (contracting with SpectrumHealth for a mobile response team), and I think that it is a plan that has been OK. But, with this opportunity and moving into the future, we can make the crisis plan a little more connected,” she said.

“It will definitely prove how law enforcement and mental health officials can work together. It will build relationships. It will help the people in the community.”

June 14, 2021 - 6:56am

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It was a glorious ending to a glorious week.

“A Field of Thanks” celebration coordinated by members of the St. James Episcopal congregation concluded its eight-day tribute to military veterans, community workers and volunteers on Sunday afternoon with the presentation of flags to 81 recipients on the front lawn of the East Main Street church.

Calling the event “a gathering of people sharing stories of hope, sacrifice and love,” the Rev. Bonnie Morris, rector, shared the significance of flags in society.

“Flags are symbols. Flags serve as many things. They may be a rallying call. They may be a reminder of an ideal. The may be a call to action,” she said. “Today and this week and throughout this entire project, flags have pointed to people. They pointed to service. They pointed to dedication.”

Morris said the flags – which were put up on the church grounds last Sunday for all to see – provided “an awesome way to come together in honor of this service.”

“We are a nation of many people and each people with many gifts, serving many people. The flags that we have gathered around us this week in ‘A Field of Thanks’ are the nation’s flags, along with the Navy flag, the flag of Canada and the flag of the United Kingdom,” she said.

“They all represent courage and commitment. They represent community and country, and a people’s dedication to service.”

The program included participation by employees of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office and City of Batavia Police Department, and solemn renditions of “Retreat” and “To The Colors” by Batavian Derek Reiss on the bugle. Captain Jim Ellison, Navy, Retired, of Le Roy, served as the master of ceremonies.

Undersheriff Brad Mazur read the list of the heroes’ names and sponsors while Genesee County Sheriff’s Office Honor Guard members Sgt. Andrew Hale, Deputy Ken Quackenbush and Deputy Kyle Krezmien presented the flags and plaques to the honorees. Batavia Police Officer Sean Wilson also had a part in the pageantry.

Categories of heroes included groups and organizations, first responders, health care professionals and members of the armed forces.

Husband and wife Kevin and Diane Skelton, of Oakfield, sponsored flags for their late fathers, James L. Skelton and Kenneth R. Howard Sr., respectively.

Both served in World War II, with the latter receiving the Purple Heart.

“I just thought it was a great way to honor everyone who served the community,” Kevin said. “We thought it was very fitting to be able to honor our fathers who served in World War II. You forget about how these people served their country and even though they didn’t talk about it much during their lives, we understand the sacrifice that they made to serve their country.”

Diane agreed, adding that it was great to see recognition beyond the military.

“I think it’s great to not only honor the veterans but also the people that did things during the COVID pandemic and people who serve the general public – corrections officers and police officers. I just think it’s a fantastic idea,” she said.

Howard Owens, publisher of The Batavian, was selected by the committee to accept a flag and plaque on behalf of news media professionals.

“It is an honor to represent local media at this ceremony,” Owens said. “Many people in our community made contributions to help us all during the pandemic but locally and throughout the nation, local journalists worked extra hours under extra pressure to bring their friends and neighbors truthful accurate information at a time when political forces tried to spread misinformation.

“I think all of us are proud of the work we did and are grateful for the community's recognition of our work.”

Diane Cox, of Batavia, a registered nurse at the Genesee County Jail, was honored for her work during the coronavirus pandemic when the jail was on lockdown – no visitation, no chaplain and no legal services.

“As a nurse, you just do what you do; you don’t look for rewards,” she said. “It’s a passion; it’s what you do. I was honored to be recognized.”

Cox said that comforting inmates during COVID-19 “was a whole new level of nursing care.”

“They were anxious about their own family members on the outside, being exposed to COVID or having COVID, as well as bringing it into the jail where we were,” she offered. “We were able to contain our people, our staff, and we starting giving COVID testing outside of the county because we wanted to know.”

Since then, the jail staff has received equipment of its own to be able to test on site, she said.

Event coordinator Phyllis Draycott said the idea came to her more than a year and a half ago.

“I felt that people needed a little closeness,” she said. “Well, I thought that maybe COVID would be over in June and looked at Flag Day since it is less busy than any other holiday – well, it’s really not a national holiday. So, that was why we did that.”

“ 'A Field of Thanks' began on D-Day (June 6) and ended on Flag Day eve," she said “and now everybody can take their flags home and fly them at home (on Monday).”

Draycott credited her team of Dawn and Pete Mark for their professional touch, and choir director Dillon Hirsch, for leading attendees in patriotic songs last Sunday.

She presented a checks to WNY Heroes Inc., of Williamsville, and Meals on Wheels of Genesee County, the two agencies that benefited from the proceeds of the event.

Dawn Mark, instrumental in creating the plaques, said she counted it “a privilege" to meet so many people and find out about all their history.

“And I’d do it again in a minute,” she said. “I would suggest to anybody who wanted to do an event like this to go ahead and recognize your community.”

The list of honorees and their sponsors follows:

GROUPS AND ORGANIZATIONS
Genesee County Community Volunteers – Lilo and Wayne Townsend;
The “Phoebe Project” – Barb and Dave King;
Crossroads House – Jeff Allen;
Volunteers for Animals – Anonymous;
Eagle Star Housing – Rich Geitner and Jen Wood;
Office for the Aging – Dawn Mark;
Batavia USPS Workers – Jackie Swinarski;
All Educators – Deacon Diana Leiker;
News Media Professionals – Dawn Mark;
Le Roy Moose Lodge Veterans – Le Roy Moose Lodge 1132.
FIRST RESPONDERS
All Veterans and First Responders – Bill Hayes, Turnbull Heating & Air;
Genesee County Firefighters – Anonymous;
Robert S. Barnes – Margaret Barnes;
Genesee County Law Enforcement – Optimum Realty;
Brian M. Frieday – Rose and Steve Rumery;
Kevin Forsyth – Pat Forsyth;
Matthew C. Fleming – Cal and Joanne Fleming;
All Corrections Officers – Optimum Realty;
Michael D. Kasprzyk – Terri Norton;
Jason R. Queal – Carol and Dick Queal.
PUBLIC IN MEMORIUM
Gary V. McWethy – Sharon McWethy;
David J. Saleh – Batavia Lions Club and Lion Liz Saleh;
Claire Sloat – Todd Sloat, Sloat Tire Shop.
PUBLIC HONORS
Donna Becker – Deb and Mike Barone;
Bonnie Morris – Anonymous;
Paul Piscatelli – Anonymous;
Leigh Skelton – Anonymous;
Kristen Temple – Kathy and Larry Belluscio.
HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONALS
Danielle Schollard – Kathy and Larry Belluscio;
Cheryl Sczepanski – Shirley Kriger;
Spencer C. Swartz – Janice and David Swartz;
Tina Rosone – Carol and Dick Queal;
Diane S. Cox – Harold Odell;
Christopher Foote – William Coughlin;
Cathy Bunce – William Coughlin;
U of R Center for Vaccine Research – William Coughlin;
United Memorial Medical Center Staff – Barb and Bill Pearce.
MILITARY
Navy Veterans – Chip and Terry McGuire.
WORLD WAR I
Donald E. Delbridge – Pete Mark.
WORLD WAR II
Kenneth R. Howard Sr. – Diane and Kevin Skelton;
James L. Skelton – Diane and Kevin Skelton;
William J. Hall Sr. – William J. Hall Jr.;
Harry Simmons – Joan and Jim Ellison;
Anthony J. Gugino – Joan and Jim Ellison;
Carl T. Todd Sr. – Mariellen Blossom;
Cora E. Houck Todd – Mariellen Blossom;
Charles T. Fox – Marilyn and David Lange;
Herman Fustino – Wendy and Bruce Fustino;
Henry Schoelles – Wendy and Bruce Fustino;
Loren F. Balduf – Donna Stiles and Family;
Chester H. Watson – Elaine and Steve Watson;
Lyle G. Mark – Pete Mark;
Gerald M. Rock – Corinne Malmberg;
Benjamin S. Giambrone – Ben’s Appliance & Kitchens;
Norman K. Lange – Marilyn and David Lange;
William Renz Sr. – William Renz Jr.;
Eldon Blowers – Nathan Blowers;
Walter N. McAlister Sr. – Carolyn and Ken Draycott;
R.W. Janet Kingdon – Mariellen Blossom (Order of the Eastern Star);
W. Evelyn Edwards Krause – Mariellen Blossom;
M.W. Harry L. Tyson – Mariellen Blossom;
R.W. Donald Keys – Mariellen Blossom.
FOREIGN SERVICE
Sam Norris – Sue and Corky Best;
Kenneth Draycott – Jane Draycott;
The Hammond Family – Anonymous.
VIETNAM
John Mack – Jeff Wuest;
Louis M. Scoville – Maureen Scoville;
Dan Ford – Shirley Ford;
Charles Graney – Tim and Bonnie Morris;
Terry J. Garigen – Jeff Wuest;
John R. Ellison – Joan and Jim Ellison;
Gary Hammond – Anonymous;
Glenn Hammond – Gary Hammond;
Kenneth C. Gray – St. James Episcopal Church.
MIDDLE EAST
Dan S. Clor – Steve Foster and The Red Osier Landmark Restaurant;
Jason E. Hammond – Gary Hammond;
Daniel R. Criswell – Josephine Paananen;
Michael Machniak – Gary Davis;
Sean T. Callahan – Kent Ewell and O’Lacy’s Irish Pub.
ACTIVE DUTY
David R. Barnes – Margaret Barnes;
Christopher C. Meyers – Barbara Meyer.

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Photos at top: A large crowd turned out Sunday for the closing ceremony of "A Field of Thanks" at St. James Episcopal Church (seated in red shirt is Phyllis Draycott, event coordinator); Genesee County Sheriff's Office Honor Guard officiating the presentation of the flags. Photos at bottom: Diane and Kevin Skelton, of Oakfield; The Rev. Bonnie Morris, rector; Howard Owens, publisher of The Batavian, with Sheriff's Sgt. Andrew Hale; Plaque that was presented to News Media Professionals; Draycott presenting check to John Wolf and Diana Fox, representing Meals on Wheels of Genesee County. Photos by Mike Pettinella.

June 3, 2021 - 9:34am

burns_1.jpgGenesee County’s new Information Technology director made a favorable impression upon county legislators at Wednesday’s Ways & Means Committee meeting when he presented a resolution that came with a zero financial impact.

Batavian Michael Burns, (photo at right), who began employment with the county on May 24 after more than 20 years at the Rochester Institute of Technology, requested that lawmakers approve acceptance of a cell phone booster that will improve reception at County Building II on West Main Street Road.

The booster is being provided at no charge by Verizon Wireless, which has an agreement with the county for installation, maintenance and operation of the in-building coverage system.

It was Burns’ first request of legislators, who forwarded the resolution to next week’s meeting of the full board.

Burns thanked legislators for the opportunity to work in his hometown and was welcomed by Legislature Chair Rochelle Stein, who voiced her pleasure that his initial resolution didn’t cost the county any money.

Previously (feature story on Burns from April 30): Batavia resident accepts Genesee County information technology director position after long career at RIT

In other action, the committee:

  • Approved using $21,250 from the 1 percent sales and use tax reserve to purchase body cameras, docking stations and annual licenses for road patrol for the Sheriff’s Office. Apparently, the request was made last year but was not transferred to the county’s 2021 budget.
  • Accepted a grant for $50,099 from the state Department of Health and Health Research Inc. for the county’s Public Health Emergency Preparedness Program, starting on July 1 and extending through June 30.
May 19, 2021 - 4:26pm

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Rayzor and Frankie are back in action after undergoing surgery and encountering medical issues, respectively.

The stars of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office K-9 unit have suffered injury and illness in recent months, with Rayzor tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his back left leg last November and Frankie having a tooth removed after fracturing it last December.

Rayzor, who is handled by Deputy Jim Stack, was out of action for about four and a half months after undergoing surgery at the Hudson Highland Veterinary Specialty Group facility in the Dutchess County Village of Fishkill.

That was followed by eight weeks of confinement and sedation as Stack had to carry the dog outside so he could go to the bathroom.

“After that, Rayzor (a 2-year-old Belgian Malinois/German Shepherd mix) had to go through intense physical therapy at Pine Woods Animal Hospital Rehabilitation Center in North Tonawanda,” said Stack, who has been working with the pup since March 2020.

Stack credited Paul McNamara, veterinary surgeon at Hudson Highlands, for opening his schedule to get the dog into surgery. He also thanked veterinarians Aubri Matroniano and Stephanie Ortel of Pine Woods and Lindsay Edwards, Rayzor’s regular vet, from the Corfu Veterinary Clinic.

Frankie, age 4½, is a Belgian Malinois that was assigned to Deputy Andrew Mullen in September 2020. After having the tooth removed, he got an infection and was sidelined for a couple weeks.

Undersheriff Brad Mazur said the department is fortunate to have the K-9 unit back on the job.

“It looks like we’ve gotten through it. It’s just one of the things that happen with a canine, with the medication and stuff.”

On Monday, Mazur spoke at the Genesee County Legislature’s Public Service Committee meeting and requested a $5,000 allocation from the K-9 Donation Reserve Account to cover Rayzor’s physical therapy and medications and Frankie’s veterinarian evaluations and medications.

The committee approved it and the resolution has been forwarded to today's Ways & Means Committee meeting and, upon further approval, to the full legislature for final voting.

“We have been very fortunate over the years with donations from the public which has enabled us to provide for our K-9s and maintain the program,” Mazur said.

In other action, the committee voted in favor of resolutions providing additional sheriff deputy services at Six Flags Darien Lake and Batavia Downs Gaming.

Mazur said Six Flags Darien Lake officials have requested weekend patrols during May and June and daily patrols during July and August. He also said he is anticipating deputies working concerts at the park this summer.

At Batavia Downs Gaming on Park Road, deputies would handle traffic control and offer other assistance during the summer concert series shows. He said the contract with Western Regional Off-Track Betting Corp., parent company of the casino, calls for eight deputies per event.

The committee voted to renew the agreement with Darien Lake through May 31, 2022, which also is the ending date of a one-year pact with Batavia Downs Gaming. The resolutions reflecting Public Service Committee approval will be forwarded to the full legislature for final voting.

Genesee County has appropriated $191,112 for overtime/additional police services for these contracts to be offset by revenue billed back to Six Flags and Batavia Downs Gaming for these services.

Also, the committee approved:

  • The acceptance of easements from the Town of Batavia around the perimeter of the DeWitt Recreation Area and behind the Spectrum office on Cedar Street – small properties that had been assigned to the town during the development of Ellicott Trail.

Currently, the county’s parks department maintains these easements through an agreement with the town.

  • Contracts with Cold Spring Construction Corp. of Akron for $967,856.50 and Erdman Anthony of Rochester for $136,000 to construct and consult on, respectively, the Hundredmark Road Bridge replacement project in the Town of Elba.

Highway Superintendent Tim Hens said Cold Spring’s bid was $100,000 less than engineers’ estimates.

The capital project is expected to be funded by federal aid (80 percent) and the county (20 percent), with the county’s share coming from its 1 percent sales tax revenue.

  • A supplemental agreement with Barton & Loguidice of Syracuse for construction inspection and administrative services connect to the replacement of the Pratt Road Bridge over the Tonawanda Creek in the Town of Batavia. The additional expense is not to exceed $31,259.

Hens said construction has been completed but this action was necessary before the project could be closed out.

  • The appointment of Batavia businessman Eric Biscaro to the Genesee County Planning Board, a volunteer position, effective June 1, 2021 through May 31, 2024.

Photo: Deputy Andrew Mullen and Frankie, left, and Deputy Jim Stack and Rayzor in front of the Genesee County Sheriff's Office this afternoon. Photo by Mike Pettinella.

May 13, 2021 - 11:05am

police_tribute_1.jpg

Genesee County Undersheriff Brad Mazur and City of Batavia Police Department Chief Shawn Heubusch hold proclamations designating May 9-15 as National Police Week while standing next to Legislator Gary Maha on Wednesday at a meeting of the Genesee County Legislature.

Mazur said he thanks those "who put their lives on the line to protect our citizens" and asked "to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice."

Heubusch credited law enforcement personnel for their "steadfast dedication to their craft."

National Police Week was started in 1962 by President John F. Kennedy.

Photo by Mike Pettinella.

May 4, 2021 - 4:01pm

Submitted photos and press release:

On May 5, 1984, President Ronald Reagan proclaimed the first full week of May would be observed as National Correctional Officers’ Week in recognition of the important role these officers play in our criminal justice system.

The position of Correctional Officer, once considered merely that of a “guard,” has become increasingly more complex and demanding, involving simultaneously custodial, supervisory, rehabilitation, and counseling roles, and that complexity continues to grow. In the year 2021, Correctional Officers continue to play that vital role, but in an ever more stressful environment due to the continuing pandemic sweeping our nation and the world. 

The lights on the Old County Courthouse cupola will be changed to red, white and blue to acknowledge this week. Also, the Genesee County Legislature issued a proclamation at last week’s April 28 meeting recognizing May 2 – 8 as National Correctional Officers’ Week.  

“The important and difficult role Correctional Officers fulfill is not always recognized or realized by the general public,” said William A. Sheron Jr.  “If you know a Correctional Officer, please join me in thanking these men and women for the exceptional service they provide every day.”

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March 31, 2021 - 5:52pm

Submitted photo and press release:

Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr. announces the appointment of Deputy Sheriff Kyle J. Tower.

Deputy Tower recently completed the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office field training program and is assigned to the road patrol division.    

Deputy Tower brings over eight years of public safety experience to the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office.

In addition to being previously employed as a Police Officer with the Rochester Police Department, Deputy Tower also has held the positions of jailor recruit with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office, Police Officer with the Chesterfield Police Department in Virginia, and EMT with the Lancaster Volunteer Ambulance and Rural Metro Medical Services.  

Deputy Tower currently resides in Darien. 

He received an associate degree in Criminal Justice from Erie County Community College and is a 2006 high school graduate from Cleveland Hill School in Cheektowaga.

January 26, 2021 - 3:31pm

Submitted photos and press release:

Three Correction officers recently graduated in a class of 12 from the Niagara County Basic Corrections Academy. 

The six-week training included instruction in the care and custody of inmates, inmate supervision, defensive tactics, firearms training, and other topics pertaining to corrections. 

“Congratulations to Correction officers Stewart, Sherwood and Jacques. We look forward to your future in Corrections at the Genesee County Jail,” said Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr.

Photo, from left: Undersheriff Bradley D. Mazur; Correction officers Tyler J. Stewart, Marissa R. Jacques (Class President), Trevor J. Sherwood; Jail Superintendent William A. Zipfel.

December 4, 2020 - 1:39pm

Emergency Services Dispatcher Exam

The open competitive Genesee County Civil Service Exam for the position of Emergency Services Dispatcher is being given Jan. 16.

Please visit the Genesee County website for a full job description, minimum qualifications, and instructions on how to submit your application by the deadline of Dec. 9.

November 3, 2020 - 1:02pm

From Sheriff William A. Sheron, candidate for reelection:

ELECTION DAY IS HERE! 

With sincere gratitude, I’d like to acknowledge my community of supporters and those of you that have already cast your early vote for my reelection. 

As others head to the polls today, I remind you of my commitment to lead and serve with honesty, integrity, and respect. With your vote, Undersheriff Brad Mazur and I will continue to build upon the accomplishments of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office and responsibly prepare to meet the future. 

A special thanks to those endorsing our campaign:

  • Genesee County Sheriff’s Employee Association (SEA)
  • Christopher K. Hayward, Village of Le Roy Chief of Police
  • Scott Fraser, Chapter Vice President -- FBI National Academy Associates NYS/Eastern Canada Chapter
  • Mark R. Gates, Past President - FBI National Academy Associates NYS/Eastern Canada Chapter
  • Gordon L. Dibble, Genesee County Legislator and Chief Deputy (Ret) Genesee County Sheriff’s Office
  • Jerome E. Brewster, Chief Deputy, CID (Ret) Genesee County Sheriff’s Office
  • R. Pete Welker, Investigator -- Genesee County Sheriff’s Office
  • Eugene Jankowski Jr., City of Batavia Council President and Lieutenant (Ret.) City of Batavia Police 
  • Gary T. Maha, Genesee County Legislator and Sheriff (Ret) Genesee County Sheriff’s Office
  • Pastor Marty Macdonald -- City Church, Batavia
  • Scott D. German, Genesee County Treasurer
  • Robert Bausch, Former Genesee County Legislator Chair and Chair of the Ways and Means Committee
  • Gary Russell, Sergeant (Ret) Genesee County Sheriff’s Office and former partner on Genesee County Drug Task Force
  • Members of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office Supervisory and Management Staff -- Sergeant Thomas A. Sanfratello, Sergeant Andrew B. Hale, Sr. Emergency Services Dispatcher Robert H. Tripp, Sr. Emergency Services Dispatcher Michael T. Sheflin, Communications Coordinator Russell L. Lang, Sergeant Jason E. Saile, Sergeant Michael J. Lute, Sr. Emergency Services Dispatcher John W. Spencer II, Sr. Correction Officer Jason R. Queal, Sr. Correction Officer Caleb C. Chaya, Sr. Correction Officer Peter M. Hoy, Sr. Correction Officer Matthew R. Burgett, Sr. Correction Officer Kevin D. Wolff, Sr. Correction Officer James M. Smart, Sr. Emergency Services Dispatcher Jason W. Holman.
  • County Sheriff’s Office Administrative Staff – Chief Deputy Joseph M. Graff, Chief Deputy Brian M. Frieday, Jail Superintendent William A. Zipfel, Confidential Secretary Carolyn A. Della Penna, Director of Emergency Communication Steven C. Sharpe, Assistant Director of Emergency Communications/Operations Francis A. Riccobono.
October 29, 2020 - 1:47pm
posted by Press Release in election 2020, Genesee County Sheriff's Office, news.

Press release:

I am sincerely humbled by the endorsement of the Genesee County Sheriff's Office Administrative staff. I thank them for their support of reelection to Sheriff of Genesee County and for their complete dedication to the citizens of Genesee County.

I am truly blessed to be surrounded by such true professionals that consistently go above and beyond to meet the demands associated with the administration of the Sheriff's Office.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

~Sheriff Bill Sheron

********************************************************************

Dear Genesee County Residents,

The current Genesee County Sheriff’s Office administrative staff offer this letter in support of the reelection of Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr. Sheriff Sheron is a steadfast leader who demonstrates the values consistent with the type of Sheriff that Genesee County deserves. He is a man of honesty and integrity and is representative of the quality of the individuals that make up the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office. Sheriff Sheron sets an expectation consisting of the highest standards in order to maintain the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office reputation of professionalism and respected service to the community.

Sheriff Sheron has dedicated his entire professional 43-year career to the citizens of Genesee County and has served in numerous roles within the Sheriff’s Office. This experience provides invaluable insight into the many facets of operations within the Sheriff’s Office, and also offers the experience of earning a true and genuine appreciation for the work performed each day by every individual at the Sheriff’s Office.

Sheriff Sheron’s experience is unquestionable and when difficult decisions need to be made, we know him to be a person of reason. He is open to differing opinions for consideration and discussion in an effort toward a sound resolution.

Sheriff Sheron carefully selected Bradley D. Mazur to serve as his Undersheriff. Undersheriff Mazur is a person of humility and uncompromising character who offers a 21-year career of consistent police work as a foundation for his work ethic and reputation. He holds a Master of Science Degree in Criminal Justice Administration and is very well-respected in the community. We know Undersheriff Mazur to be a thoughtful, rational leader who has assumed the role of Undersheriff promoting a fair standard.

During a time when the issue of trust has come into question in law enforcement, the dignity and integrity of each member of the Sheriff’s Office has never been more important. As members of the administrative team, both Sheriff Sheron and Undersheriff Mazur have earned our trust and proven themselves as the most-qualified candidates for the roles of Sheriff and Undersheriff of Genesee County.  

Please join us in support of Sheriff Sheron and Undersheriff Mazur in this year’s election. Each vote will make a difference.

Respectfully submitted,

Chief Deputy Joseph M. Graff

Chief Deputy Brian M. Frieday

Jail Superintendent William A. Zipfel

Confidential Secretary Carolyn A. Della Penna

Director of Emergency Communications Steven C. Sharpe

Assistant Director of Emergency Communications/Operations Francis A. Riccobono

October 19, 2020 - 2:04pm
posted by Press Release in news, K-9, Genesee County Sheriff's Office.

Submitted photo and press release:

Genesee County Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr. is pleased to provide an update on the Office’s two K-9 teams (Deputy James Stack / K-9 Rayzor, left, and Deputy Andrew Mullen / K-9 Frankie).  

Both K-9 teams are bonding well and are making significant progress through their training program and will be Department of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) patrol certified soon.

Patrol certification includes tracking, criminal apprehension, handler protection, building searches and obedience. Additional training at narcotics school will begin Nov. 2 and be completed Nov. 27 at which time both teams will be in service and fully trained.

“We greatly appreciate the remarkable public support received for this valuable program,” Sheriff Sheron said.

September 30, 2020 - 1:15pm

Press release:

Genesee County Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr. is pleased to announce that the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office has completed the reaccreditation audit of its law enforcement bureau.

An accredited law enforcement agency is reassessed every five years and must show they have been in compliance with the 133 standards during that time period. The Genesee County Sheriff’s Office received its initial accreditation in year 2000.

The Law Enforcement Accreditation Program provides agencies with a method for developing and adhering to the highest standards of professionalism, efficiency and effectiveness within the field of law enforcement and to provide formal recognition of that excellence. The Law Enforcement Accreditation Program is voluntary. Of the approximately 550 law enforcement agencies within New York State, approximately 145 agencies are accredited.

The Office will be officially recognized at the New York State Law Enforcement Agency Accreditation Council meeting in Albany in December.

“I would like to show special recognition to Deputy Deborah Snyder for her dedication to the reaccreditation of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office," Sheriff Sheron said. "I am extremely proud of the Sheriff’s Office for meeting these strict compliance standards set by the NYS Division of Criminal Justice Service and for the professionalism of all the employees of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office."

September 29, 2020 - 1:09pm

From Jerome E. Brewster, chief deputy/criminal investigation division -- retired

Dear Genesee County Registered Voters:

As a recently retired Chief Deputy from the Genesee County Sheriff 's Office, I formally endorse William A. Sheron Jr., for the position of Sheriff of Genesee County for the next term of office.

After 43 years of service with the Sheriff's Office, starting as a civilian Dispatcher and ending as Chief Deputy overseeing the Criminal Investigation Division, I have firsthand knowledge and experience about the operations of the Office and feel confident endorsing candidate Bill Sheron.

Throughout his career, Bill has constantly strived to better himself and the Sheriff's Office through promotional exams, training, securing grants and networking for much-needed equipment. Being Sheriff requires one to be a master of police work and criminal law, get your personnel the very best equipment/training, and hire the very best people to work for the Office.

It also requires one to be thoroughly versed in Correctional best practices, Correction Law and Civil Law. To be an effective Sheriff, one must possess all of these things. This is not a job that most can "learn on the go" as the consequences can literally be life or death. In this litigious era, a simple mistake can cost the County (and taxpayers) millions of dollars in a lawsuit. It is critical that a seasoned employee with years of experience lead the Office in these difficult times.

I have known Bill Sheron longer than anyone currently at the Sheriff's Office, and I have worked side by side with him throughout a multitude of crime scenes including homicides, fatal car crashes, bank robberies, sex crimes, drug investigations, and search warrant executions. Specifically, I would like to highlight our first officer-involved shooting in the Town of Pembroke a few years ago as a prime example of Bill's commitment to the citizens of Genesee County.

While Sheriff Sheron was attending the National Sheriffs' Institute's "training for new Sheriffs" in Colorado, he was the second person I spoke with while responding to the scene. I had several more conversations with him from the scene, whereupon, he caught the first flight home the next day, was back in Genesee County that afternoon, and was briefed by me (as Chief Deputy of CID, I was tasked with the oversight of all officer-involved shootings).

I know Sheriff Sheron, how he reasons, and where his priorities lay. They have ALWAYS been to make the best decisions on behalf of the Sheriff's Office, Genesee County, and its citizens.

Genesee County requires such a person for Sheriff, and I sincerely endorse William A. Sheron Jr., for that position. It's the right decision for the citizens of Genesee County, members of the Sheriff's Office, as well as the federal, state and local law enforcement agencies dealt with on a daily basis.

September 25, 2020 - 8:00am

Photo from left: Correction Officers Michael A. Strumpf, Christopher L. Seelbinder, Austin J. Davis, Matthew M.J. Luce, and Undersheriff Bradley D. Mazur.
Submitted photo and press release:

Genesee County Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr. announces the graduation of Correction Officers Michael A. Strumpf, Christopher L. Seelbinder, Austin J. Davis and Matthew M.J. Luce.

These Correction Officers recently graduated in a class of 18 from the Livingston County Basic Corrections Academy. Correction Officer Davis was one of two team leaders of the class. The six-week training included instruction in the care and custody of inmates, inmate supervision, defensive tactics, firearms training, and other topics pertaining to corrections.

“Congratulations to Correction Officers Strumpf, Seelbinder, Davis and Luce and welcome to the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office family,” Sheriff Sheron said.

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