Journalist @baltimoresun writer artist runner #amwriting Chaplain PIO #partylikeajournalist

Journalist @baltimoresun writer artist runner #amwriting Chaplain PIO #partylikeajournalist
Journalist @baltimoresun writer artist runner #amwriting Md Troopers Assoc #20 & Westminster Md Fire Dept Chaplain PIO #partylikeajournalist

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Excellent article by Carroll County Times reporter Heather Mongilio: “Sheriff’s Office loses three deputies”

Excellent article by Carroll County Times reporter Heather Mongilio: “Sheriff’s Office loses three deputies,” January 13, 2017

In my capacity as a volunteer fire and police chaplain, I have had conversation after conversation, in confidence with law enforcement officers, that the compensation and benefits are not commensurate with the ever-increasing difficulty of the job and the current 'war on police' (not my words,) environment in which police officers work.

In spite of the fact that Carroll County Sheriff Jim DeWees is an exceptional sheriff, there is a largely held perception that local elected officials throughout the nation - even in Carroll County, do not have our back.

Moreover, when the going gets tough, local elected officials will throw the police under a bus. “Hands Up, Don't” Shoot” was a lie.

Look no farther that the recent actions by the U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch and the Justice Department. In 2016, there were 4,368 shooting victims in Chicago. Chicago’s murder rate is up 72% with 700-plus homicides. The recent response by the Justice Department is no different that that of the last eight years all across the nation - scapegoat, blame and criminalize the police. This is bizarre. Then after hammering the police, AG Lynch ponders, “officer morale is low.” Duh, ya think? #BlueLivesMatter #ChicagoPD

These days, police officers are highly skilled, well-educated, and highly motivated individuals. Yet they go to work every day, knowing that they could die that day and leave their family behind – or be vexatiously prosecuted for conducting their job consistent with their training and keeping the community’s best interests at heart.

In today’s market, police officers are highly employable. In today’s environment, from a LEO’s point of view, why stay with law enforcement when you can take your skills, training, and education somewhere else, get paid better, spend more time with the family, including nights, vacations and holidays – and have better benefits. Just saying.

“While he left the department, Buenger praised DeWees and the department, saying DeWees does his best to provide the deputies with the best equipment and training. The money could be better, he said, but it was not the deciding factor in his decision. ‘I can't say anything negative about the Sheriff's Office in Carroll County,’ Buenger said.” Read more:   


At the county level, I believe that the Board of Commissioners have our backs. However, the matter of juggling competing needs with constrained and finite resources gets complex quickly. Carroll County has huge infrastructure needs that need tax dollars. The demands on the fire and EMS services are reaching levels that require much more funding or the volunteer system will collapse. Unfunded mandates from the state and federal government are constantly adding expenses. Not to be overlooked is the cost of health care because of recent changes at the federal level – ACA.

Sheriff DeWees is a friend. I have worked with him for years. His head is on straight and he is part of the solution.

What will make a difference will be the voting public making our concerns known to elected officials. When I was in office, I proposed a 5-cent tax increase for the purpose of supporting law enforcement and the fire service. I felt strongly that the public supported the idea. This was when I brought LEOPS forward despite active opposition on the part of other elected officials. My elected official colleagues, who represented a narrower nuanced band of the constituency, did not support the idea of increasing revenues for first responders. I will just leave this right there.


Losing deputies is nothing new for Sheriff Jim DeWees. But in the past two weeks, three deputies have left the Carroll County Sheriff's Office with two leaving the profession.

"I've lost some good deputies over the last years," DeWees said.

In 2016, DeWees said he lost about 10 to 12 deputies, which he called "significant" for a department the size of the Sheriff's Office.

Of the three deputies who left in the past two weeks, one left to be a criminal investigator within a Pennsylvania state's attorney's office, one left to work in his father's company and one left for Wyoming, DeWees said.

When a deputy decides to leave the department, DeWees sits down with each of the deputies to talk about the decision to leave. For many it's the salary, DeWees said.

Excellent article by Carroll County Times reporter Heather Mongilio: “Sheriff’s Office loses three deputies”

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