Sheriff returns from training conference

Published 1:25 pm Wednesday, August 15, 2018

JEKYLL ISLAND — Sheriffs’ Offices in Georgia have many responsibilities such as providing courthouse security, operating jails, transporting inmates and mental patients, performing traffic and law enforcement functions, registering sex offenders and many more. Sheriffs are the chief law enforcement
officer of each county and have many mandated responsibilities by state law. As a result of these diverse responsibilities, sheriffs must be knowledgeable of best practices and procedures in many areas. Current concerns of law enforcement as they relate to the Office of Sheriff are addressed during training conferences sponsored by the Georgia Sheriffs’ Association Inc.
Sumter County Sheriff Pete Smith recently returned from the Association’s annual Summer Training Conference held on Jekyll Island, July 30 –Aug. 1, where 115 sheriffs from around the state participated in the three-day event.
The sheriffs participated in multiple training sessions, received timely information from high-level state officials and conducted Association business. The conference was devoted to training sessions to update the sheriffs on topics relevant to public safety and the Office of Sheriff. Expert speakers provided training to the sheriffs on
legislative and legal issues, the opioid crisis and specific legislations to combat the problem,
mental health issues in Georgia including the transportation of patients, phone scams targeting the elderly and other mandates.
The sheriffs also heard from representatives of the Georgia Peace Officers Standards & Training Council, Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities Training Council, Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities,
Department of Driver Services, and the State Board of Pardons & Parole.
“The services required of the Office of Sheriff in every county of the state are critical to the safety of our citizens and are unlike the mandates of all other local or state law enforcement agencies. During this important training event, sheriffs convened to identify viable solutions to complex and costly issues facing sheriffs’ offices and local taxpayers. Their participation is vital if we are to seek out the best practices in fulfilling these important responsibilities,” stated Terry Norris, executive director, Georgia Sheriffs’ Association.
Other highlights of the conference included the installation of the 2018-2019 officers for the Georgia Sheriffs’ Association. The newly elected officers include: President, Gilmer County Sheriff Stacy Nicholson; 1st Vice President, Lumpkin County Sheriff Stacy Jarrard; 2nd Vice President, Banks County Sheriff Carlton Speed; and Secretary-Treasurer, Turner County Sheriff Andy Hester. New officers installed for the Georgia Sheriffs’ Youth Homes Inc. included: President, Jackson County Sheriff Janis Mangum; 1st Vice President, Murray County Sheriff Gary Langford; and 2nd Vice President, Effingham County Sheriff Jimmy McDuffie; and Secretary-Treasurer, Stephens County Sheriff Randy Shirley.

The Georgia Sheriffs’ Association Inc. is comprised of 159 elected sheriffs with the support of over 70,000 honorary members throughout the state who recognize and appreciate the service of the constitutional Office of Sheriff and the Georgia Sheriffs’ Youth Homes Inc.