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March 4, 2019 - 3:07pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in warrants, news, Sheriff's Office.
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Andrew J. Bilicki age 34, W/M 5’9” 200 lbs., brown hair, brown eyes, LKA West Ave. Medina, NY

Bench warrant for petit larceny PL 155.25 (misdemeanor) Alabama Town Court, DOW 6/20/18

Arrest warrant for bail jumping 3rd PL 215.55 (misdemeanor) Alabama Town Court DOW 8/17/18

Jesse D. Bowman age 26, W/M 6’1” 170 lbs., brown hair, brown eyes, LKA Vine St. Batavia NY

Arrest warrant for petit larceny PL 155.25 (misdemeanor) and conspiracy 6th PL 105.00 (Misdemeanor) Batavia Town Court DOW 2/4/19

Barbara E. Ferrando age 47, W/F 5’9” 180 lbs., brown hair brown eyes, LKA Summit St. Batavia, NY

Bench warrant for petit larceny PL 155.25 (misdemeanor) Batavia Town Court DOW 2/4/19

 

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Creagan T. Maclaren, age 20, W/M 5’10” 175 lbs., brown hair, green eyes, LKA Brower Rd. Spencerport, NY

Bench warrant for DWI VTL 1192-2 (misdemeanor) Darien Town Court DOW 8/4/18

Clint J. Reed, age 21, W/M 5’6” 180 lbs. black hair, brown eyes, LKA Barton St. Rochester, possibly in Ellicottville, NY area

Bench warrant for DWAI VTL 1192-1 (violation) Batavia Town Court DOW 7/30/18

Arrest warrant for bail jumping 3rd PL 215.55 (misdemeanor) Batavia Town Court DOW 9/17/18

Shawn M. Szczygiel age 41, W/M 5’8” 145 lbs., blond hair blue eyes, LKA  Tinkham Rd. Darien, NY

Bench Warrant for DWI VTL 1192-2 (misdemeanor) Darien Town Court DOW 11/28/17

 

If you are able to assist the Sheriff's Office in locating these people, the Sheriff's Office asks that you do not approach these people and that you call (585) 343-5000 with information that may assist in locating the suspects.

March 3, 2019 - 6:11pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in schools, news, education, oakfield-alabama, Sheriff's Office.

 

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Deputy Howard Wilson started working as the school resource officer for Oakfield-Alabama Central School District at the end of January. The position was officially approved by the Genesee County County Legislature last week, and Friday we got a chance to talk with Wilson about his new job.

Here's a press release from the Sheriff's Office:

Genesee County Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr. is pleased to announce that as a result of the collaboration between the Genesee County Legislature, Oakfield-Alabama Central School Board and the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office, the assignment of a School Resource Officer has been approved.

Deputy Howard O. Wilson V has been selected by the Oakfield-Alabama Central School District as its School Resource Officer. Deputy Wilson is a five-year veteran of the Sheriff’s Office. He was hired as a Correction Officer in 2014 and then appointed to Deputy Sheriff in 2016. During his tenure, he has earned three Commendations.

"The Oakfield-Alabama School District and Board are proud to have Deputy Sheriff Howard Wilson serve as our School Resource Officer," said Superintendent John Fisgus. "We look forward in creating a positive working relationship with him as he will serve to help and assist our students and community in many different facets.

"Thank you to the Genesee County Sheriff's Office for this agreement.”

Sheriff Sheron indicated that his goal has always been to establish a School Resource Officer in all county schools to ensure the safety and protection of the students and faculty.

“With the assignment of Deputy Wilson in the Oakfield-Alabama Schools, we are that much closer to our goal," the sheriff said. "Although the cost associated with placing a School Resource Officer in the schools is significant, I believe the safety and security of our children should be of the utmost precedence.”

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Superintendent John Fisgus, Undersheriff Brad Mazur, Sheriff William Sheron, Deputy Howard Wilson, and Legislator John Hilchey.

February 20, 2019 - 1:07pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Sheriff's Office, news, school resource officers, notify.

For the remainder of the school year, the Oakfield-Alabama Central School District has reached an agreement with the Sheriff's Office to provide a school resource officer on the district's campuses.

The Public Service Committee recommended Tuesday a budget amendment that would increase the Sheriff's budget by $42,263 to be offset by $41,263 from the school district.

Deputy Howard Wilson is expected to serve as O-A's new SRO.

Wilson's road patrol position will be filled by a new hire.

There are a number of open slots on road patrol currently, Sheriff William Sheron told the committee. 

Five recruits begin law enforcement training March 11. They will attend the academy in Niagara County for 22 weeks, followed by 14 weeks of field training.

Another four recruits are expected to begin training in August or September.

In the meantime, Sheron said, the office is understaffed and deputies are working overtime. The overtime expense is offset by the open positions going unpaid.

Legislator Marianne Clattenburg asked if the Sheriff's Office has received reports from other school districts with new SROs this year -- Alexander, Pavilion, and Pembroke -- to substantiate that the program is effective.

"About a month ago, I revisted each school district and the response from superintendents and staff was overwhelmingly positive," Sheron said. "More than just being a deterrence, their are bonds being formed.

"Students are not fearful of the officers and their not afraid to share experiences with officers, sometimes about home life, which isn't always good. All I can say is every response I've gotten has been favorable from each one of the schools."

January 25, 2019 - 2:56pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Sheriff's Office, news, notify.

Press release:

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Officer of the Year Award – Deputy Sheriff Travis M. DeMuth
Deputy Sheriff Travis M. DeMuth has distinguished himself in the performance of service to the citizens of Genesee County during 2018. During this year, Deputy DeMuth has shown to be a reliable asset, he has maintained a consistent, positive attitude and has excelled in the performance of his duties. Specifically, during two incidents, Deputy DeMuth’s instincts, investigative skills and proactive attitude contributed to the arrest of a well-known drug trafficker from Rochester who was in possession of 154 individually packaged quantities of cocaine, heroin and marijuana. These were confiscated and never made it to the streets to be sold in our community. Additionally, during another incident, Deputy DeMuth’s calm demeanor, persistence, and decisive actions were instrumental in reviving an unresponsive victim and likely saved her life. 

Deputy Sheriff Travis M. DeMuth has reflected great credit upon himself and the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office and most deserves to be named Officer of the Year.

Photo: Christopher DeMuth, Travis' father, Larissa Shaffer, sister, Avery Schaffer, niece, Rebecca DeMuth, stepmother, Margaret DeMuth, mother, Olivia Ahearn, girlfriend, Deputy Travis M. DeMuth, Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr., Undersheriff Bradley D. Mazur.

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Distinguished Service Award – Confidential Secretary Carolyn A. Della Penna
Confidential Secretary Carolyn A. Della Penna has distinguished herself as a member of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office. Carolyn continuously goes above and beyond to ensure that the operations of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office are accomplished in an efficient and professional manner. She is always available to take on additional tasks and assist members with complicated issues. Carolyn has a wealth of knowledge and is recognized as the "go to person" on operational procedures of the Sheriff’s Office and Genesee County. Her willingness to help others is truly appreciated by all the members of the Sheriff’s Office. Confidential Secretary Della Penna’s knowledge and attention to detail have proven to be a great asset to the Department and, through her work, has distinguished herself and brought great credit upon herself and the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office. Thank you for all you do.

Photo: Sheriff William Sheron; Confidential Secretary Carolyn Della Penna; her daughter, Sydney; her husband, Tom; and Undersheriff Bradley Mazur.

Longevity Awards:

  • Jail Cook Manager William S. Cultrara, 10 years
  • Principal Financial Clerk Deborah A. Shea, 10
  • Sr. Emergency Services Dispatcher Michael T. Sheflin, 10
  • Sr. Emergency Services Dispatcher Jason W. Holman, 10
  • Investigator James M. Diehl, 10
  • Deputy Sheriff Kevin R. McCarthy, 10
  • Emergency Services Dispatcher Steven L. Robinson, 10
  • Emergency Services Dispatcher Francis A. Riccobono, 10
  • Correction Officer Daniel J. Renz. 15 years
  • Sr. Correction Officer Caleb C. Chaya, 15
  • Correction Officer Brian M. Manley, 20 years
  • Sr. Correction Officer Peter M. Hoy, 20
  • Investigator/Youth Officer Timothy G. Wescott, 20
  • Emergency Services Dispatcher Lynn B. Riccobono, 25 years
  • Deputy Sheriff Deborah L. Snyder, 25

Certificates of Appreciation

  • Cook Manager William S. Cultrara
  • Community Services / Victim Counselor Rosanne DeMare Smart
  • Volunteers for Animals

Commendations

  • Investigator Chad J. Minuto, 2nd
  • Deputy Sheriff Chad P. Cummings, 2nd
  • Deputy Sheriff Ryan W. Young, 2nd
  • Deputy Sheriff Mathew J. Clor, 2nd
  • Deputy Sheriff Jeremy M. McClellan, 2nd
  • Emergency Services Dispatcher Steven L. Robinson, 2nd
  • Sr. Emergency Services Dispatcher Jason W. Holman, 2nd
  • Emergency Services Dispatcher Steven R. Smelski, 2nd
  • Deputy Sheriff Kevin R. McCarthy, 3rd
  • Deputy Sheriff Deborah L. Snyder, 4th
  • Emergency Services Dispatcher Lynn B. Riccobono, 5th
  • Sergeant Jason E. Saile, 6th

Meritorious Awards

  • Deputy Sheriff Matthew R. Butler, 3rd
  • Investigator Christopher A. Parker, 2nd
January 5, 2019 - 4:27pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in news, Sheriff's Office, notify.

A dedication to the community, to law enforcement, and his reputation among his peers as a person of good character, are among the reasons Sheriff William Sheron Jr. said he picked Sgt. Brad Mazur as his new undersheriff after Mazur took his oath of office yesterday.

Judge Charles Zambito administered the oath to Mazur at the Sheriff's Office on Park Road in Batavia, witnessed by Mazur's wife, Lisa, and their children Hunter, 18, Brady, 12, and Casey, 9.

"He's well recognized not only by the law enforcement community but the criminal justice system for being just an outstanding individual, a great human being, compassionate," Sheron said. 

The undersheriff is the person who steps in when the sheriff isn't available. The undersheriff is also a key supervisor in day-to-day operations of the department with responsibilities that cross patrol, investigations, communications, and the jail. The undersheriff is also a point person on new hires, disciplinary procedures, ensuring compliance with rules and regulations, and handling grant applications.

"Brad is, the best way to put it, an outstanding individual, somebody that I know I can count on," Sheron said. "I've known Brad's family since I was a young child. They actually grew up on the same street as me. I just think he's a he's a person of great character, somebody I have no doubt I can rely on in any type of situation."

Mazur said he's been in love with law enforcement since he started his career in 1999 as a deputy in the Sheriff's Office. He's risen through the ranks, most recently being promoted to sergeant in 2017 and given command of the Local Drug Task Force. He's also been a field training officer, a drug recognition expert and a hostage negotiator. He was named Officer of the Year in 2002 and received the Kiwanis Criminal Justice Award.

After the retirement of Greg Walker at the end of the year, Sheron didn't announce a job opening. He waited for members of the department to come to him and express an interest in the job. Mazur was among those who spoke up.

"I wanted to rise to the leadership challenge and I wanted to give back to the department," Mazur said. "I've had excellent supervisors throughout the years and I've learned from them. Right now, I have a great team around me so I'm looking forward to this new challenge."

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The current command staff: Jail Superintendent William Zipfel, Sheriff William Sheron Jr., Undersheriff Bradley Mazur, Chief Deputy - Investigations, Jerome Brewster, Chief Deputy - Road Patrol, Joseph Graff.

January 3, 2019 - 4:49pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in K-9 Frankie, Sheriff's Office, Chris Erion, news, notify.

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When "Frankie" starts full-time patrol duty this spring, Deputy Chris Erion said he will be a good boy -- good at sniffing out crime, good at locating and subduing criminals, and good at helping rescuers find lost and missing people.

"He's under control all the time; he never goes over the top where were he loses control of himself," Erion said. "He has that strong drive that we need to have a working dog. He wants to work and play, whatever it is, he'll work as hard as he can for whatever reward you have.

"He has a good structure to him, a very strong dog," Erion added. "He is strong when he needs it but he's eager to please me. He's working hard for my attention and my affection so that's what is going to help and transfer over in training and work."

Frankie is a 2-year-old Belgian Malinois from Holland, located by a police dog specialist in Rochester who handled the import. He officially became the property of the Sheriff's Office two weeks ago but has been living and working with Erion longer than that while Erion evaluated Frankie for police work.

"I liked him because he seemed very clear-headed and he is always thinking about what he is doing," Erion said. "Sometimes these types of dogs tend to go over the top with their thought process and forget about what they're doing. They work so hard that they forget about what they're doing."

This a new stage for Erion's career. Five years ago, he was a new K-9 officer working and training with a first-time police dog. He and "Destro" were rookies at the K-9 job together. Now Erion has a better idea of the training the process and what to expect. That excites him, he said, about Frankie's potential.

It's bittersweet, too, because Destro, who succumbed in October to complications from cancer surgery, died so unexpectedly but Frankie represents a new opportunity.

"He's a good dog," Erion said. "He's a different personality than Destro -- a hard worker, if not harder, as intelligent if not better. I'm looking forward to getting going with him because the first dog, you don't know what to expect. Now, coming into the second dog, you know what the end game looks like. You know what it's going to look like at the end. And it's just a lot more fun, a lot more relaxing."

Erion's new partner is named after Deputy Frank Bordonaro, who died in 2014.

"We always like to remind people that Frank is still in our thoughts and it seemed very appropriate to name him Frankie," Erion said. "Frank was my first field training officer. He taught me how to do the job for the most part."

Genesee County's newest law enforcement duo will head to Canada in March to enhance and refine Frankie's training and then Frankie will be a full-fledged police dog.

Around here, tracking people is a big part of a K-9's job and Erion said Frankie will return from Canada ready to look for bad guys on the lam or find lost and vulnerable adults or children.

"He can track a little bit right now," Erion said. "We really need to fine tune it and polish it up and we'll do that at our school in Canada in March. That's one of the specialties of the school. That's one of the skills that we come out with is the ability to track and find people and locate people whether they're criminals, vulnerable people -- whatever that is. And I'm confident he's going to be very good. I'm excited about his ability to track or really find anything so I can't wait until summer when we get moving."

For all Frankie's loyalty to Erion (necessary in a good police dog) and his obvious skills and good temperament, Erion admits it's still hard to let go of Destro. He moves forward with mixed feelings.

"Certainly the best part of my career has been working with dogs, hands down," Erion said. "That's been the best thing. It's bittersweet. Destro is a great dog. I haven't even taken his name off the (patrol) car because I am unable to do that yet. I feel a little bit of guilt going on without him. But again, I'm excited about the new dog, too, because I see a lot of potential. I know the potential now. I didn't know that about Destro. I didn't know what we could do with my first dog but seeing where we can go with this is pretty exciting."

Previously: 'Destro' takes on new job with a dogged enthusiasm

The community contributed thousands of dollars to the Sheriff's Office K-9 fund after Destro died and those funds cover the purchase of Frankie and the cost of his training. Sheriff William Sheron's office sent out this press release (pdf) thanking donors and the pictures below.

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Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr., Correction Officer Eric Wagner, Deputy Chris Erion, Chief Deputy Joseph Graff, NYSCOPBA Western Region Vice President Joe Miano.

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Sheriff's Employee Association President/Sr. Correction Officer Kevin Wolff, Deputy Chris Erion, Sr. Correction Officer Pete Hoy.

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Students from Elba Central School which hosted an Applebee's Pancake Breakfast Fundraiser for the K-9 fund.

December 20, 2018 - 5:30pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Sheriff's Office, news, notify.

walkerretire2018.jpgPress release:

Undersheriff Gregory H. Walker, a 31-year veteran of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office, is retiring effective Dec. 29. Walker started his career on Oct. 22, 1987, as a Deputy Sheriff. On Oct. 25, 1993, he was promoted to Investigator and then promoted to Sergeant on Sept. 20, 1997.   

During his tenure, Walker earned several awards which include seven Meritorious Awards, three Commendations and Officer of the Year. Additionally, he is a Drug Recognition Expert and Instructor, was Sergeant of the Drug Task Force and is highly involved with the Badge of Honor Association.

Greg’s numerous years of employment are proof to the dedication and passion he has for the law enforcement profession. 

“I would like to thank Greg for his dedication to serving the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office and the citizens of Genesee County,” said Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr. “Everyone at the Sheriff’s Office wishes him all the best for his future.”

Photo: File photo, April 2018

November 20, 2018 - 12:19pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in K-9, Destro, Sheriff's Office, news, notify.

The Sheriff's Office may have found a young dog worthy of taking over K-9 patrol for "Destro," who died unexpectedly in early October.

A 2-year-old Belgian malinois from the nation of Holland is being evaluated by Deputy Chris Erion, the Sheriff's Office current K-9 handler, and if the dog proves suitable, the county will pay a $9,500 fee for purchase, shipment and paperwork on the dog.

That's about $1,000 more than anticipated but the cost is also amply covered by donations from members of the community to the Sheriff's K-9 program.

Erion said this morning that he has the dog -- who has a name but the name may change -- and is working with him to see if is temperament is suitable for police work. This morning, he's returning from the K-9 training facility in Canada where he was given a workout.

"We're putting him through his paces," Erion said.

The dog has only basic training at this point and will need to be fully trained in K-9 police work before being put into service. That training will start in March.

The fundraising following Destro's death has been so successful -- and there are more fundraising events planned -- that the Sheriff's Office will acquire a second K-9. Undersheriff Greg Walker said the new, second K-9 handler has already been selected from among current deputies but the Sheriff's Office is not ready yet to announce who the new handler will be.

Even though payment for the new dog is covered by community donations, the money still goes into the county's budget and the expenditure must be approved by the Legislature. The Public Service Committee voted to recommend approval of the $9,500 fee for the new dog from Holland.

At the Public Service meeting yesterday, a member of the Legislature asked why the K-9 money came from public donations rather than the county's general fund and Legislator Gary Maha, the former Sheriff, explained that when the Sheriff's Office first decided to acquire a K-9 the decision was made to ask the community to pay for it.

There have been four dogs purchased since then, each one paid for through donations and that just seems to be the way it's done now. There was nothing preventing the Sheriff's Office from including a new K-9 in its operations budget.

In this case, as soon as the news came out of Destro's death, who succumbed to complications from cancer surgery, community members set up fundraisers and donations started pouring in.

Legislator John Hilchey suggested he and his fellow legislators wouldn't have a problem funding the K-9 program, but "the community didn’t really give us a chance to ask on it."

October 28, 2018 - 9:00pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Destro, K-9, Sheriff's Office, news, Chris Erion.

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Deputy Chris Erion talks with security staff from Genesee Community College during a community tribute gathering for his late partner, K-9 "Destro," who succumbed unexpectedly a couple of weeks ago from complications from a cancer surgery.

Erion plans to continue as a K-9 handler for the Sheriff's Office and plans are in place for the department to acquire another dog, hopefully by March so Erion and his new partner can begin training.

A number of fundraisers are planned around the community to help defray the costs of acquiring and training a new police dog. We will provide updates as details become available.

Photos submitted of Deputy Erion because I went to the tribute without realizing I didn't have any SD cards in my camera.

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K-9 "Kye" from Medina PD.

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Erion with a Genesee County dispatcher.

October 18, 2018 - 2:58pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Destro, news, Sheriff's Office, Main St. Pizza Company.

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Vic Marchese, owner of Main St. Pizza Company donated $4,000 this morning to the Sheriff's Office to be used toward the purchase and training of a new K-9.

The department's K-9 "Destro" died unexpectedly two weeks ago and the Sheriff's Office is just beginning a fund-raising campaign for a new dog.

Photo submitted by the Sheriff's Office: From left, Deputy Chris Erion -- Destro's partner, Vic Marchese, Sheriff Bill Sheron, and Undersheriff Greg Walker.

The Sheriff's Office is also planning a tribue to Destro on Wednesday. Press release below:

A tribute to honor Genesee County Sheriff’s Office K-9 “Destro,” who passed away last week after a very short battle with cancer, will be held next Wednesday, Oct. 24, 3 -7 p.m. at the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office, 165 Park Road, Batavia.  The public is welcome to stop by and enjoy refreshments while viewing a slideshow of Destro’s accomplishments. His handler, Deputy Erion, will also be in attendance.

The K-9 program is a valuable asset to the Sheriff’s Office and surrounding law enforcement agencies. The K-9 team is used for search and suspect apprehension, locating missing persons including missing children and Alzheimer's patients, contraband and drug searches, tactical tracking, evidence recovery, building searches, patrol, and public presentations.

The Genesee County Sheriff’s Office has been able to maintain a K-9 team for the past 16 years with support and donations from the public along with county funding. Public support and donations are vital to the continuation of this worthwhile program and are used to help offset the cost of food, veterinary services, training, equipment, and other K-9-related expenses.

Deputy Erion will continue to be the K-9 officer and has begun the search for a new K-9. The cost for a police dog ranges between $7,500 - $10,000 and a 15-week K-9 training course costs approximately $5,000.

The Genesee County Sheriff’s Office is respectfully requesting your help to raise funds to continue this program, a critical service to the community. Donations can be made payable to and mailed directly to Genesee County Sheriff’s Office K-9 Fund; 165 Park Road, Batavia, New York 14020. A GoFundMe page has also been created, and the link is available from the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page.

Please consider making a donation to the K-9 Fund; your support is greatly appreciated.

October 6, 2018 - 10:39am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Destro, Sheriff's Office, news, notify.

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K-9 "Destro," who joined the Sheriff's Office in 2013, has died after being diagnosed with cancer recently.

Sheriff William Sheron confirmed Destro's passing this morning. He is planning to release a statement later this morning.

Destro's partner was Deputy Chris Erion.

Since joining the force, Destro has been instrumental in helping police capture bad guysfind lost people, and serving as an ambassador for local law enforcement.

Photo: File photo, Destro and Deputy Chris Erion at the Corfu Winterfest in 2014.

UPDATE -- noon: The following press release is from Genesee County Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr.

Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr. announced the untimely death of K-9 “Destro” following a very short battle with cancer. Destro developed heath concerns earlier this past week and passed away yesterday, Friday Oct. 5, 2018 at the Cornell University Companion Hospital with his handler, Deputy Christopher Erion, by his side.

Destro, an 8-year old German Shepherd, joined the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office in August 2013.

Destro will continue his service in death, as his body will be made available to Cornell University Veterinary Students to learn and study from for a brief period of time. His remains will then be returned to his family home in Byron where he will be laid to final rest alongside two other family dogs.

“Destro was a true asset to all law enforcement agencies across Western New York," Sheriff Sheron said. "He has been instrumental in tracking suspects, missing persons, and locating narcotics, just to name a few skills he brought to the job. He will be truly missed and our sympathies are with his handler, Deputy Christopher Erion and family."

The Genesee County Sheriff’s Office is truly appreciative for the tremendous care and comfort afforded to Destro and Deputy Christopher Erion by the Hilton Veterinary Clinic and the Cornell University Companion Hospital.

September 7, 2018 - 12:04pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in school resource officers, schools, education, news, Sheriff's Office.

Press release:

This week was the first day of school not just for students returning from summer break, but for returning and new School Resource officers in Genesee County.

Students entering school doors this week at Pembroke, Alexander, Pavilion, Byron-Bergen and Genesee Valley Educational Partnership’s (BOCES) Batavia Campus were greeted with familiar faces and new faces as Genesee County School Resource officers begin the school year. 

New SROs Deputy Patrick J. Reeves (Pembroke), Deputy Eric J. Meyer (Alexander) and Deputy Cory W. Mower (Pavilion) are excited to embark on this new assignment.

They have recently completed School Resource Officer training and have shadowed existing SROs Deputy Chad P. Cummings (Genesee Valley Educational Partnership’s –BOCES, Batavia Campus) and Deputy Matthew R. Butler (Byron-Bergen) to learn  from experiences both have had over the years in this position.

Sheriff William Sheron stated that it is his goal to establish a School Resource Officer in all county schools to ensure the safety and protection of the students and faculty.

“Although the cost associated with placing a School Resource Officer in the schools is significant, I believe the safety and security of our children should be of the utmost precedence,” the sheriff said. 

July 28, 2018 - 10:45pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Teen Academy, news, byron-bergen, Sheriff's Office.

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Luke Rindell is congratulated by Deputy Matthew Butler, middle, and Sheriff William Sheron during the graduation Friday of the first class to complete the new Teen Academy in law enforcement presented by the Sheriff's Office at Byron-Bergen High School.

Rindell was the only student in the 14-member class to score 100 on his final exam.

Below, a press release from the Genesee County Sheriff's Office about the academy:

“I am pleased to announce that the First Teen Academy was an extreme success," Sheriff William Sheron said. "The students were provided with the opportunity to experience the various roles of law enforcement in our community, and they eagerly embraced all aspects of the curriculum.

"I want to thank the students for their hard work and dedication and to all those that provided instruction throughout this weeklong program. A special thank you to the Academy Director, Deputy Matthew R. Butler, and deputies Chad P. Cummings and Deborah L. Snyder for their assistance and efforts in coordinating such a unique, one-of-a-kind experience for the students.

"We look forward to hosting the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office Teen Academy on an annual basis for students throughout Genesee County."

The following participants are graduates of the First Annual Genesee County Sheriff’s Office Teen Academy:

  • Class captains -- Brandon Kowalski, Devon Reigle and Morgan Rhodes;
  • Zachary Babcock;
  • Cameron Buck;
  • Shaina Dejesus;
  • Bailey Faucett;
  • Ethan Pocock;
  • Luke Rindell;
  • Noah Toal;
  • Shawn Turner;
  • Gianni Vallese;
  • Alessandra Wolf;
  • Jayson Yauchzee.

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Previously: There's no slack in training for first group of students going through law enforcement Teen Academy

July 26, 2018 - 5:32pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Teen Academy, Sheriff's Office, news, notify, byron-bergen.

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Deputies are cramming a lot of police training into one week for the first Teen Academy hosted at Byron-Bergen High School by the Sheriff's Office.

In this one week, said Deputy Matthew Butler, the 14 students enrolled are covering the same material a cadet at a standard police academy must grasp in five-and-a-half months.

"I don’t want any student to come away and say 'that was nothing, it wasn’t tough,' or 'it was too easy, I didn’t get anything out of it,' " Butler said. "That’s why we’re trying to throw a lot of stuff at them so they get the most from the experience and see what it’s really like."

Each day, at 8 a.m., starts with physical training or PT, and students take turns leading PT. Police officers all need to have leadership skills and be able to communicate effectively and PT and marching in formation are a chance to practice.

Instruction from there includes classroom lectures, demonstrations, and hands-on practice.

Deputy Chris Erion has been out with K-9 "Destro"; Sgt. Jason Saile presented a crash management demonstration; there are tours of the jail and communications; and a chance to see how the scuba team and Emergency Response Team work.

Instruction includes defensive tactics, penal law, vehicle and traffic law, and crime scene investigation and evidence recovery.

Patricia Reeves led a DWI victim impact panel.

There is homework every night and a test tomorrow followed by graduation at 1 p.m.

“We’re giving them a real taste of what it’s like to be a police officer and what you have to go through in the academy to become a police officer," Butler said.

The Teen Academy was pitched to Sheriff William Sheron by Butler, who is the school resource officer at Byron-Bergen, after he had seen something similiar in Monroe County. This is the first teen academy in Genesee County.

The training is no-nonsense. Tuesday, during traffic stop training followed by felony stop training, deputies Ryan DeLong, Andrew Mullen, and Chad Cummings were quick to stop, correct, and lecture in a tone that didn't permit embarrassment but understood that is a lot to master even in a simple traffic stop.

Proper procedures, situational awareness, emotional intelligence, and observation are all critical in a traffic stop, which is both the most routine task in law enforcement and the one daily task most fraught with risk, both to officers and civilians. A good officer never grows complacent.

DeLong, Mullen, and Cummings demanded the attention of the students, and attention to detail, from how they approached the car, to where they stood while talking with the driver, which hand they used to grab and hold paperwork, and how they safely walked back to the patrol vehicle.

With the basics understood, the students who role-played as drivers and passengers could improvise their responses to the cadets, from denying wrongdoing to revealing they were licensed handgun permit holders and were carrying a weapon. Responses were critiqued and corrected.

On two consecutive "stops," the "deputy" didn't notice the passenger holding a handgun in his lap.

Mullen emphasized, when approaching a vehicle, you've got to see everything going on inside the vehicle. The weapon could easily be viewed even before an officer would reach the driver-side door. At that point, Mullen said, you fall back and radio for backup.

DeLong, Mullen, and Cummings then simulated a felony traffic stop, with Cummings assuming the role of the criminal suspect, and then the students took their turns at practicing the procedure.

Many of the students participating do anticipate a career in law enforcement, so that's why they signed up for the academy.

"I really want to go into law enforcement," said Morgan Rhodes, a senior at Notre Dame HS. "It interests me a lot. I’ve always wanted to do it and this is really helping me figure it out."

She's interested in solving mysteries, she said, "making it right" after a crime has been committed, and ensuring people follow the law.

She thinks she will start her law enforcement career in the military but hopes to become a deputy some day.

Devyn Reigle, who has been taking Criminal Justice courses at BOCES, is also considering starting his law enforcement career in the military. The academy, he said, was a chance to get a more hands-on grasp than his college class on what being a cop is all about.

"I've learned a lot more," Reigle said. "I've learned what to be aware of, that it's a lot more serious than you think, and to keep your eyes focused on everything."

Top photo: Deputy Chad Cummings in the role of suspect during a felony stop demonstration.

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Deputy Andrew Mullen with simulated pistol drawn while conducting a felony stop demonstration.

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Deputy Ryan DeLong during the felony stop demonstration.

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Deputy Ryan DeLong cuffing Deputy Chad Cummings.

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Gianni Vallese, a Byron-Bergen student, practicing a felony stop.

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Devyn Reigle taking Deputy Chad Cummings into custody.

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Deputy Ryan DeLong providing instructions on procedures for a traffic stop.

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Gianni Vallese conducting a traffic stop while Deputy Ryan DeLong observes.

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Devyn Reigle accepting paperwork from a driver during a practice traffic stop.

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Morgan Rhodes conducting a traffic stop.

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The inaugural class and some of the instructors of the Sheriff's Teen Academy at Byron-Bergen High School.

After the jump, more pictures of training submitted by Deputy Deb Snyder and Deputy Chad Cummings.

July 12, 2018 - 5:51pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in elba, Genesee County Jail, Sheriff's Office, news.

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Twenty-five years ago, at age 38, Norm Itjen decided to become a corrections officer in the Genesee County Jail figuring it would be the kind of job that would offer security and help him reach retirement.

Tuesday, he proved his hunch right. He retired and was given a warm send off by his coworkers, and colleagues within the Sheriff's Office and Batavia Police Department.

A native of Elba and graduate of Elba High School, and currently the mayor of Elba, Itjen's first career was as a maintenance worker at St. Jerome's Hospital. He also had a security officer job before taking the civil service exam and getting hired at the jail.

The best part of the job, Itjen said, was the people he met.

"Through the years, I've become president of our local union, president the New York State Deputy Sheriff's Association," Itjen said. "I met people all over the state and made lots of lifetime friends."

Over the years, many people have started their employment with the Sheriff's Office at the jail and later moved onto road patrol. That wasn't part of Itjen's plan.

"At the time, I wore glasses," Itjen said. "At that time you couldn't work on the road if you wore glasses. And then my age also played a factor."

Now at retirement age, Itjen says he has plenty to keep him busy. Besides being mayor, he likes camping, golf, and he's a volunteer at his church in Morganville.

"I also have a beautiful granddaughter," he said.

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Corrections officers, Sheriff's Office command staff, several deputies and Batavia PD officers, saluted Itjen as he walked out of the Genesee County Jail for the last time.

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On his last day of duty, Itjen shakes hands with Officer Kyle Krtanik, working his first day of duty with Batavia PD. 

June 14, 2018 - 5:47pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Sheriff William Sheron, Sheriff's Office, sro, schools, news, notify.

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Sheriff William Sheron today introduced the three deputies who will become the new School Resource Officers in Pembroke, Pavilion and Alexander school districts.

Those district's past budgets in May commitment to pay for the SRO positions on their school campuses in 2018-19.

Deputy Patrick Reeves, a 21-year veteran of the force, is the new SRO in Pembroke. He's pictured above with Sheron, Pembroke Superintendent Matthew Calderon, and in the back row, Legislator Gordon Dibble and Legislator Shelly Stein.

Reeves is a lifelong Pembroke resident who has children in the district and is a youth sports coach.

"I think this is just the next step for me," Reeves said, "make that connection with the kids, keep them focused, get them to the end of their goals, get a good career, and while I’m in school, try to help every kid that you possibly can."

He said he hopes he can be a positive influence on some of the students he deals with over the course of the school year.

"Most kids need some guidance, and if I can connect with one or two who might need it, that’s my fuel," Reeves said. "I win and the district wins."

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Deputy Cory Mower, also a 21-year veteran of the department, is the new SRO in Pavilion.

Mower said he wanted to work with the Pavilion district because throughout much of his career on road patrol he's covered the southeast part of the county. He knows a lot of the students and their families already.

He also worked six years in the jail and came into contact with a lot of young people and believes that experience has given him some insight on how to help teenagers today.

"Now with the schools opening up (these positions), I just think it’s a natural progression where I can use my experience to help some kids, maybe keep some kids out of trouble, maybe help them before they get addicted to drugs or make the wrong choice, the wrong move," Mower said.

Above photo: Sheron, Mower, Pavilion Superintendent Ken Ellison, Stein, and Legislator Gregg Torrey.

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Deputy Eric Meyer, who attended Alexander Central Schools all the way through high school and still lives in Alexander has been assigned to his home school district. He is the new SRO in Alexander.

"I like the idea of keeping the children safe in my own district, in my own community," Meyer said. "I also live in the community so I thought it would be a great opportunity for me and for the school to be a positive role model for these kids."

He's already visited the elementary school and many of the students recognized him, said Meyer, who joined the Sheriff's Office three years ago.

"I already see the kids looking up to me and giving me high-fives and a hand clap," Meyer said.

Above photo: Sheron, Stein, Meyer, Alexander Superintendent Catherine Huber, Torrey.

Below, a press release from the Sheriff's Office:

Genesee County Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr. announces the newest School Resource Officer assignments in three local school districts.

Pembroke Central School District has chosen Deputy Patrick J. Reeves as its School Resource Officer. He graduated from Pembroke in 1992 and is a 22-year veteran of the Sheriff’s Office. Deputy Reeves will start in this position on Sept. 1.

Alexander Central School District has chosen Deputy Eric J. Meyer as its School Resource Officer. He graduated from Alexander in 2006 and is a three-year veteran of the Sheriff’s Office. Deputy Meyer will start in this position on Sept. 1.

Pavilion Central School District has chosen Deputy Cory W. Mower as its School Resource Officer. He is a 22-year veteran of the Sheriff’s Office. Deputy Mower will start in this position on July 1.

Additionally, the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership (BOCES) and the Byron-Bergen Central School District also renewed their commitments for next year’s School Resource Officers on campus.

Sheriff Sheron stated that it his goal to establish a School Resource Officer in all county school districts to ensure the safety and protection of the students and faculty.

“Although the cost associated with placing a School Resource Officer in the schools is significant, I believe the safety and security of our children should be of the utmost precedence," Sheron said. "I applaud the tremendous support received from the school administrators, school boards, and the Genesee County Legislature, which ultimately made this possible.”

April 13, 2018 - 7:25pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, news, notify, Batavia PD, Sheriff's Office.

The snowfall was pretty heavy just before midnight, Saturday, Dec. 10, 1977.  That hour was shift change for Batavia PD then and Officer Douglas D. Squires manned the only patrol car on the road in the city. He was parked at Main and Oak watching the green, yellow, and red lights change, swirls of big snowflakes fall, and any cars that might pass through the intersection.

Down the street, at Quik-N-EZ Food Mart, 40 Oak St., employees were about to close up for the night. The little shop had recently hired some new employees and Squires remembers that two or three times that week they had accidentally triggered the alarms while trying to get them set.

Carl Salway, the only law enforcement officer shot in the line of duty in Genesee County


A police-involved shooting is generally defined as a police officer discharging his weapon in the line of duty.

Based on a search of historical records and conversations with law enforcement professionals in the county who have worked locally for decades, it appears that Officer Doug Squires and Deputy Ryan Young are the only LEOs in Genesee County history to be involved in an officer-involved shooting.

It also appears that only once in Genesee County history has a police officer been shot.

In August 1921, Officer Carl Salway, Batavia PD, came within an inch of his life, literally.

That night, shortly after 10 p.m., he stumbled upon a burglary in progress of an auto storage warehouse owned by Raymond M. Walker at 241 West Main St., Batavia. 

Inside were Harold W. Pratt, 27, of 128 South Main St., Batavia, who owned a cider mill, and Earl Lee Smith, of Law St., Batavia, 27. 

Pratt shot Salway with a .45-caliber automatic pistol. The bullet passed through Salway's chest, just missing his heart.

Salway would eventually retire from the police department, but not before serving a suspension in 1931 for insubordination.

Squires, now 64, grew up in Batavia but graduated from Byron-Bergen High School. That night in 1977, he was more than a year into his five-year stint with the Batavia Police Department. He would go on to work security for Kodak before moving into sales and marketing with the company. As he moved up, Kodak moved him, first to Orlando, then Birmingham, then Atlanta, and eventually Charlotte, N.C., in 1989, where he lives in with his wife. 

He didn't realize until told today that what would transpire just before midnight that Saturday night in 1977 would stand as the only officer-involved shooting in Genesee County history until two nights ago.

As the minutes drew tighter toward midnight that night, a Batavia dispatcher informed Squires the alarm at the Quik-N-EZ Food Mart had gone off again.

Squires put his patrol car in drive and drove down Oak. As he approached, he turned off his lights. The store lights were on and the parking lot was empty.

As he pulled up, he remembered a news story out of Buffalo from a couple of days before. Two police officers had been shot and killed responding to a robbery alarm at the Holiday Inn by the airport.

"I remembered that when that alarm came in for that store, that incident came to mind and I thought I’m not going to just wheel in there and think they made a mistake and set off the alarm again," Squires said.

As he approached, he unholstered his revolver.

Peering in, he saw two female employees, Edwina Heschke, of Batavia, and Debbie Maskell, of Indian Falls, lying face down on the floor. Behind the counter, pulling money out of the cash register was a male in a ski mask.

The man in the ski mask turned out to be William M. Timoney, who was 34 at the time, recently released from Attica on parole, and a resident of Dewey Avenue. 

Squires pushed the door open, identified himself and yelled, "freeze."

Timoney looked at Squires, pointed his 14 shot .22 long rifle calibre handgun with a full magazine, at the back of one of the clerks and told Squires, "Pig, you get out of here or they’re both as good as dead."

"At that point," Squires said, "the gloves were off. He's threatening a third party with physical harm and possibly their lives."

Squires fired at Timoney and missed. Timoney ducked behind a counter, popped up again and Squires fired again, missing again.  

As the gun battle ensued, another Batavia officer, D.G. Kopper, arrived as back up.

When the perp's head popped up from behind the counter again, between the cash register and orange drink dispenser, Squires fired again. This time he caught Timoney in the face, the bullet hitting his cheek and ear.

"He was quite a mess," Squires said. "He lost his right ear. The shot picked him right up off the floor. The money went one way and the gun went another."

As Sheriff William Sheron noted today, police officers go to work every shift knowing this may be the eight hours where they get shot at or they may have to shoot another person.

Just because there have only been two incidents in Genesee County history, and now three, where an officer either shot someone or has been shot himself, doesn't mean it isn't an ever-present danger. Every chance encounter, when you're in law enforcement, can turn deadly with very little warning.

“Law enforcement officers go to work every day knowing that they may be required to sacrifice their own lives, or take the life of another human being in order to fulfill their obligation of protecting the citizens of our communities," Sheron said.

Two nights ago, Deputy Ryan Young faced the challenging decision of whether to fire his weapon after responding to a report of a disturbance and shots fired at the Log Cabin Restaurant in Indian Falls. As Young and other officers pulled into the parking lot, Keith Kent, 61, of Albion, fired another shot. Young and his colleagues yelled at Kent to drop his weapon. He didn't. Rather, Kent turned -- according to information available so far -- toward Young and pointed his pistol at him.

As Undersheriff Gregory Walker put it describing the incident while talking with reporters on Gilmore Road early Thursday morning, "Our officer did take the shot and the suspect was killed."

Timoney, the 1977 robber, was lucky. He lived. After he was shot, Squires and Kopper rushed to his side and cuffed him.

Timoney, who used a gun stolen from a home in Alexander, was treated at St. Jerome Hospital then hauled before County Court Judge Glenn R. Morton, charged with robbery in the first degree along with several other charges, then jailed without bail.

The district attorney in 1977 was Ronald L. Fancher. He settled on a plea agreement for Timoney, attempted robbery.  Timoney entered a  guilty plea and was sent to state prison for less than four years. He was released in 1982. By 1984, he was back in prison for an armed robbery in Queens, serving a maximum 15-year sentence. He was released in 2000.  In 2000, his name pops up in a couple of stories in the New York Daily News about homeless people in the city.

Squires described shooting Timoney as "a surreal experience." He was put on paid leave and he had to turn over his revolver for ballistic testing. 

"I had a lot of sleepless nights," he said. "It was quite an experience. Most police officers never even draw their weapons or let alone fire their weapons over a 20 or 30-year career. Here, I'm on the job for at most a couple of years and I run into something like this."

Eugene Jankowski, who served Batavia PD for more than 35 years, starting in 1978, was a corrections officer in the Genesee County Jail the night Squires shot Timoney.  He remembers Timoney coming into the jail with a big bandage on his ear.

Now City Council president, Jankowski is a firearms expert and led in the creation of the county's Emergency Response Team.

Even though Jankowski never encountered a situation that escalated into the need to shoot somebody, he faced many life-and-death decisions during his career. Training and experience are critical to helping officers handle the unexpected, he said.

"I’ve found scenario-based firearms and defensive tactics training, combined with state law and department policy, was the most beneficial to me," Jankowski said. "That, along with real-life experience helped me to physically and mentally prepare for many types of use-of-force encounters."

Squires said he thinks about Dec. 10, 1977, every time another police shooting hits the news.  

"Until you're a police officer and you go through it, there's really not much you can think about to know what it's like," he said.

His advice for Young or other officers who must fire their weapon at suspects: Don't second guess yourself.

"And don't let others second guess you. Just know that it's your job and you have to do what you have to do to defend yourself or innocent bystanders. You have to know what you did is right."

April 13, 2018 - 4:20pm

young_ryan_w_deputy.jpgPress release:

Deputy Ryan W. Young has been identified by Genesee County Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr. as the officer involved in Wednesday night's shooting at the Indian Falls Log Cabin Restaurant.

Deputy Young is a six-year law enforcement officer who joined the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office in 2016.

Sheriff Sheron said: “Law enforcement officers go to work every day knowing that they may be required to sacrifice their own lives, or take the life of another human being, in order to fulfill their obligation of protecting the citizens of our communities. Deputy Young’s actions on Wednesday night did just that.”

ADDITIONAL INFO: Deputy Young was with the Le Roy Police Department prior to joining the Sheriff's Office. On Dec. 1, 2015, he distinguished himself at a crime scene on Seldon Road, Le Roy, where Kyle G. Johnson had already killed a neighbor and set his own house on fire as Young arrived on scene. After he arrived, Johnson fired in his direction toward a fire chief. Young immediately took command of the situation, took cover, instructed neighbors to seek shelter in their basement, and kept other responding units informed of Johnson's movements and whereabouts, even, while at times, under the threat of being fired upon. He received a Distinguished Service Award from Le Roy Chief Chris Hayward for his valor. Johnson was eventually taken into custody without further shots fired.

After the duty-related death of Deputy Frank Bordonaro in 2014, Young made rope bracelets with brass plates honoring Bordonaro and sold them to others in the law enforcement community to help raise funds to donate to Bordonaro's sons.

Earlier this year, Young received his first Commendation from the Sheriff's Office.

April 3, 2018 - 10:33am
posted by Howard B. Owens in YWCA, Genesee Justice, news, Sheriff's Office.

Press release:

Genesee County Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr. would like to remind the public that one of the many roles of Genesee Justice, a division of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office, is to provide assistance to crime victims, including domestic violence victims.

For more information, please contact Genesee Justice, located at 14 W. Main St. in the City of Batavia, (585) 815-7821.

Information from the Genesee Justice Web Page:

Becoming a victim of a criminal act is often a traumatic and disorienting experience for individuals. Victims are faced with an increased sense of vulnerability and threat to their personal autonomy and independence. Victims can also question their beliefs on safety and the order that they have come to expect from the community that they live in.

Genesee Justice works with victims to help them attain a more personal sense of justice. The investigation and prosecution of offenders within the criminal justice system is complex and foreign to most people, particularly as to how it impacts victims. Dignity doesn’t often come easy within the courtroom or the community. We encourage victims to empower themselves, which is critical to the healing process.

We will keep victims informed of what is happening with the investigation of the accused and guide them through any role they may need to play; we will take the time to explain to victims what they can expect during the proceedings of a case when it goes into court; we will accompany victims to any process and court proceedings; and we will assist victims in seeking counseling services; we will also help to address financial losses incurred as a result of the crime, including assisting victims in filling out applications for the New York State Office of Victim Services (OVS), if they are eligible.

The OVS helps victims with unexpected or unaffordable medical or funeral expenses, loss of work and counseling services.

A victim may be referred to Genesee Justice by the District Attorney’s Office, Family Court, or Law Enforcement. Our door is always open for victims to walk in themselves.

Victim Assistance Services include:

  • Assistance in filing Office of Victim Services application;
  • Provide information on VINE (Victim Information and Notification Everyday) and assist victim with VINE registration, if interested;
  • Provide updates on status of court case;
  • Assistance in preparing pre-sentence investigation packet:
    • Restitution information
    • Victim impact statementProvide home visits
  • Refer clients to appropriate agencies for further assistance;
  • Assistance in preparing right of allocution; (the victim’s right to speak in front of the Court at sentencing)
  • Assistance in preparing application for orders of protection;
  • Assistance in filing paperwork with surrogates court;
  • Accompaniment to court appearances;
  • Provide referrals for counseling;
  • Provide referrals for emergency items if needed by victims;
  • Assistance in writing letters to Parole Board;
  • Offer opportunity for victim/offender conference if desired by the victim.
March 9, 2018 - 1:25pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Sheriff's Office, news.

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Our apologies to Sgt. Eric Seppala and the Genesee County Sheriff's Office for not publishing this when it was sent over on March 1. That was a very busy few-day period and I had a hard time keeping up and this got lost in my inbox.

Press release:

Sergeant Eric K. Seppala, a 21-year veteran of the Sheriff’s Office, retired at the end of his shift today. Seppala started his career with the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office on Aug. 17, 1996, as a Correction Officer in the Genesee County Jail. On May 15, 1999, he was appointed a Deputy Sheriff and then promoted to Sergeant on Jan. 18, 2014.

During his tenure, Eric earned six Commendations; was assigned to the Crash Management Team; was a Field Training Officer; and was instrumental in the research of acquiring rifles for the patrol vehicles.

“Sergeant Seppala has always been a very dedicated, professional officer,” stated Sheriff William Sheron. "Everyone here at the Sheriff’s Office will truly miss Eric and wish him all the best in his future endeavors.”

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