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Tag Archive | "Kent County Sheriff Department"

Three hurt in rollover crash


This pickup truck rolled Friday morning, June 10, injuring the female driver and two young passengers. Post photo by J. Reed.

This pickup truck rolled Friday morning, June 10, injuring the female driver and two young passengers.

Three hurt in rollover crash

A woman and two children were sent to the hospital on Friday morning, June 10, after their truck rolled on 17 Mile in Solon Township.

The crash occurred shortly before 10:30 a.m., in front of 1750 17 Mile Road, east of Lime Lake Rd. According to Joshua Roney, of Kent City, he was heading westbound on 17 Mile in his Ford F350 pickup, and was turning left into the driveway, where he works, when another pickup behind him tried to go around him and clipped his back bumper. “She was going way too fast,” he said.

The other pickup then rolled.

The call came into 911 saying passengers had been ejected. According to the Michigan State Police, a young female passenger, Gabby Olvera, 9, of Kent City, was ejected. The other two, driver Debbie Monroe, 58, of Sparta, and a young male, Gustafo Olvera 10, were not ejected.

According to Lt. Chris Paige, with Solon Fire and Rescue, the female driver, grandmother of the two children, was transported to the hospital by Rockford Ambulance with serious injuries, and the two children were transported with non-life threatening injuries.

The Michigan State Police said that the Monroe was cited for being unable to stop in an assured clear distance.

Assisting the MSP at the scene was the Kent County Sheriff Department, Solon Fire and Rescue, Algoma Fire and Rescue, and Rockford Ambulance.

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School board approves deputy on campus


CSPS-hawk-logo

By Judy Reed

The Cedar Springs Board of Education showed Monday evening that school security is high on their priority list, when they approved a partnership with the Kent County Sheriff Department to have a School Resource Officer on campus (SRO) 40 hours a week for the upcoming school year.

Building relationships with students to prevent problems and increasing campus security are just two of the things that a SRO would do. Sgt. Jason Kelley noted that there had been 168 calls on school property since the beginning of 2015. “These are reactive—someone called us. We could lower that number and intervene before something happens,” he explained.

Superintendent Dr. Laura VanDuyn reminded everyone that there are 4,000-plus people on campus every day, when you include students, staff, and parent volunteers.

“Security has been on everyone’s mind, especially with recent developments,” said trustee Joe Marckini.

The Kent County Sheriff Department offered to fund 30 percent of the program.

The outstanding cost to the district would be approximately $76,000, after the Sheriff Department’s contribution. The cost would cover wages and benefits for 40 hours per week for the deputy; all standard issued deputy equipment; a Kent County Sheriff car, fully equipped, fueled and maintained; and all police training and supervision.

VanDuyn explained that because of a layoff at the high school of a security officer, the net cost would be about $40,000 to the district for the program.

Marckini wanted to make clear that them hiring the SRO is not why the security officer was being laid off.

“No,” said VanDuyn. “We’ve had bomb threats and intruders on campus this year. This is a very difficult decision. We are looking at our emergency plan. We have worked hard, but we can’t have everything in our budget. We are moving toward a whole new model,” she explained.

The SRO will be based at the high school, but visit other buildings. Cedar Springs Middle School, located on 16 Mile, will keep their security officer.

The school and the Sheriff Department will work together on the process of choosing the deputy. The Sheriff Department will accept letters of interest from deputies, then narrow the field down to those they think might be a good fit for the district. School representatives will then interview the deputies, and forward their decision to the Sheriff Department for final approval.

There are currently six schools actively involved in the program, each with their own officer—Northview, Kenowa Hills, Kent City, Forest Hills, Lowell, and Byron Center. Caledonia also just approved joining the program.

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Woman charged with leaving child in a vehicle


Parents, caregivers advised to never leave child alone in car

Police were called to the Walmart in Comstock Park on Saturday, May 21, at 6:18 p.m., on a report of a child left in a vehicle.

Kent County Deputy Ysquierdo arrived on scene and found a 2-year-old girl in the back of a running car. He was unable to awaken her, and it appeared she had a red face and was sweaty. When he forced his way into the car, the child began to wake up. She was transferred to Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital with signs of heat exhaustion, but is expected make a full recovery.

The child’s grandmother, Karol Anne Fitzgerald, 71, of Stanton, was found shopping in Walmart. On May 25, the Kent County Prosecutor’s office charged Fitzgerald with one count of leaving a child in an unattended vehicle, which is a 93 days misdemeanor. On May 26, she was arrested and released on a $500 surety bond.

A referral was made to Child Protective Services.

This type of scenario happens more often than you might expect, many with tragic outcomes.

According to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, as of May 17, six children had already died in the U.S. from suffering heat stroke in a car. On average, 37 deaths a year occur for that reason.

“We know from past experience that fatalities can happen anytime, anywhere, including in moderate temperatures,” said Nick Lyon, director of MDHHS. “We don’t want to see this happen to any family. That’s why we are asking everyone to help protect kids from this very preventable tragedy by never leaving your child alone in a car, not even for a minute.”

It doesn’t have to be the middle of the summer for a child to get overheated. Even with seemingly mild temperatures outside, the temperatures inside a car can rise 20 degrees in as little as 10 minutes. A child’s body heats up three to five times faster than adult’s, making them more susceptible to heat stroke. Temperatures inside a car can easily be double the temperature outside.

MDHHS said we can cut down the number of deaths and near misses by remembering to ACT.

A: Avoid heatstroke-related injury and death by never leaving your child alone in a car, not even for a minute. And make sure to keep your car locked when you’re not in it so kids don’t get in on their own.

C: Create reminders by putting something in the back of your car next to your child such as a briefcase, a purse or a cell phone that is needed at your final destination. This is especially important if you’re not following your normal routine.

T: Take action. If you see or hear a child alone in a car, call 911. Emergency personnel want you to call. They are trained to respond to these situations. One call could save a life.

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Rockford man killed in crash


A Rockford man died in this crash at 14 Mile and Northland Drive last week.

A Rockford man died in this crash at 14 Mile and Northland Drive last week.

A 24-year-old Rockford man died last Wednesday when the car he was riding in turned in front of another vehicle.

According to the Michigan State Police Rockford Post, the accident occurred about 11:17 p.m., May 18, at 14 Mile and Northland Drive, in Algoma Township.

The investigation showed that the driver of a 2001 Ford Mustang, a 22-year-old Rockford resident, was traveling westbound on M-57 (14 Mile) when he turned left (south) on to Northland Drive and turned into the path of an eastbound 2008 Buick Enclave driven by a Cedar Springs man.

The driver of the Buick wasn’t treated for any injuries at the scene, while the driver of the Mustang was transferred to the hospital. The passenger of the Mustang, Luke Haworth-Hoeppner, 24, of Rockford, was pronounced dead at the scene by medical personnel.

Police said alcohol is thought to be a factor in the crash.

Assisting at the scene was the Kent County Sheriff Department, Algoma Fire Department, and Rockford Ambulance.

The crash remains under investigation.

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Kent County Sheriff issues annual awards


 

The Kent County Sheriff Department held their annual awards ceremony on Thursday, May 6, at the Kent County Sheriff’s Office Equestrian Training Center, 4687 Kroes Avenue, Rockford.

The following were chosen as 2015 Deputies of the Year and Civilian Employee of the Year:

Wendy Baird, Account Clerk I, Accounting Office, selected as 2015 Civilian Employee of the Year;

Deputy Douglas Breu, selected as 2015 Deputy of the Year—Corrections;

Sgt. Bryan Muir, selected as 2015 Deputy of the Year—Law Enforcement;

Matt Garbarino, selected as the 2015 Traffic Squad Special Deputy of the Year.

N-Sheriff-awards-BairdWendy Baird 2015 civilian employee of the year

Wendy began her career at the Kent County Sheriff’s Office on January 3, 2006 as an Account Clerk I in the Corrections Inmate Accounting Office. She processed new inmate records, inmate bonds, and court papers, balanced monies, ran LEIN checks on inmates and processed inmate release paperwork.

On November 26, 2012, she was transferred to the Sheriff Administration’s Accounting Office as an Account Clerk I. She is responsible for preparing invoices, assists with grant reimbursement requests, completes drug forfeiture reports, assembles the daily cash deposit, and processes payroll every two weeks.

This past year saw several issues with the CAPSIT payroll system. With Wendy’s assistance and focus, she ensured that each Sheriff Department employee’s time slip information was correctly entered into the payroll program. She successfully stabilized this process over the past year and now, with her first-hand knowledge, she will be a key player in implementing the new workforce management software called Kronos, ultimately replacing CAPSIT.

Wendy pleasantly welcomes visitors and employees to the fifth floor administration office. She maintains a positive attitude and tirelessly goes about her work in a very consistent and even manner throughout the entire day. Her dependability is phenomenal and her quality of work is undeniable.

N-Sheriff-awards-BreuDeputy Douglas Breu 2015 Deputy of the year—Corrections

Doug began his career at the Kent County Sheriff’s Office on October 7, 1991 as a

Corrections Officer, responsible for the general supervision and custody of inmates, conducting inmate searches, transfers, and investigations regarding alleged incidents within the facility. Doug was assigned to the Sheriff’s Honor Camp from 1998 until it closed in 2011. Doug adjusts well to change and transitioned effortlessly from working at the Honor Camp to the Main Jail. Due to Doug’s computer programming expertise, he created the electronic

version of the Department’s organizational chart in 2011. Doug was nominated for the September 2011 Rule of the Month for his useful and complete daily journal entries.

Throughout 2015, Doug was primarily assigned as the “L” relief deputy but often assisted wherever he was needed without hesitation. As release officer, he has been pivotal in assisting deputies with the day to day issues. Doug regularly forfeited his own break so that other deputies were relieved throughout their shift. Although he excelled in his position, he accepted frequent changes in his assignment without complaint.

Doug is trusted and respected by his peers. He is professional and respectful to the inmate population. He is a team player and makes it a priority to let his fellow colleagues know he is there to back them up, ensuring others feel supported and safe. He’s energetic, motivational, and has a high work ethic.

N-Sheriff-awards-MuirSergeant Bryan Muir 2015 Deputy of the year—law enforcement

Bryan began his career at the Kent County Sheriff’s Office as a County Patrol Officer on January 8, 2001. In September 2003, he was assigned to the Detective Bureau—Family Services Unit. As a detective, he led by example and proved his investigative skills through communication, technical knowledge, and his ability to think outside the box. He demonstrated a drive to produce a thorough investigation from the initial report through a successful prosecution.

Bryan has a high level of integrity and is well liked and respected by his peers. Bryan has received numerous commendations from this department and has been recognized many times for his work by the public, police agencies, and the Prosecutor’s Office.

Bryan received a Life Saving Award for his efforts to extract and save an injured victim from a submerged vehicle on July 17, 2002. He received Letters of Recognition for the arrest of suspects in an unarmed robbery case on December 13, 2005, for an arrest in a robbery case on March 12, 2006, for capturing a suspect for an assault that occurred on September 20, 2009, and arrests of suspects that performed several armed robberies during the year 2009.

On September 26, 2011, he was promoted to County Police Sergeant on the Road Patrol. Since that promotion, Bryan served as the Underwater Search and Recover Team Commander and as a Tactical Entry Team Leader. In these roles, he consistently contributes and offers his opinion and knowledge during training and activations to ensure a safe and effective environment.

Bryan volunteers for Shop with the Sheriff, participates in the West Michigan Tactical Officers’ Association Tactical Shoot Competition, and serves on the Kent County Law Enforcement Association Union Board. He brings a unique style and positive outlook to his multifaceted roles.

N-Sheriff-awards-GarbarinoMatt Garbarino Kent County Traffic Squad 2015 special Deputy of the year

Matt Garbarino was approved for membership in the Kent County Traffic Squad in April 2010. He completed and graduated from the Traffic Squad Reserve Officer Academy in May 2011 and has been a very active member of the Enforcement Unit since.

Matt has been very involved in other areas of the Squad as well. He redesigned the Squad’s website in 2012, updating it on a regular basis. He has served as the Public Relations Lieutenant since 2013 and has created and coordinated a number PR initiatives for The Squad.

Matt assisted with the implementation of the KCSD Running Team in 2012 and serves as Co-Captain. In 2015, he was instrumental in having at least one member of the team carry a Thin Blue Line Flag for awareness in the 5k, 10K and 25K race categories of the 5th/3rd Riverbank Run.

Matt photographs and prepares a video record of the annual Shop With A Sheriff and National Night Out events, sharing them with the department and community. He also assists with the marketing of these programs as well as many other events with the design and production of flyers, brochures and various marketing materials.

Matt has also prepared and produced the current Kent County Sheriff’s Office recruiting video and just recently completed a video that will be used in the fundraising campaign for the expansion of the department’s K-9 Unit.

Matt is single and has a 13 year old son, Matthew. They enjoy a number of activities together including pistol and rifle target shooting. Matt is an avid marathoner, tri-athlete and Spin Class instructor at the South YMCA. In his spare time, he is employed as the Marketing Manager for Cincinnati, Inc., a company specializing in the manufacture of industrial 3-D printers, laser cutters, and industrial design products.

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Crash takes life of Sparta High teen


Five teens were riding in this Pontiac Grand Prix when it left the road and hit a tree in Alpine Township on Sunday, April 10. Photo from FOX 17.

Five teens were riding in this Pontiac Grand Prix when it left the road and hit a tree in Alpine Township on Sunday, April 10. Photo from FOX 17.

An Alpine Township family is grieving this week after their 16-year-old daughter died from injuries she suffered in a traffic accident involving five teens.

_N-Fatal-crash-alyssa-eggerding-041016

Alyssa Eggerding

According to the Kent County Sheriff Department, they responded to the scene of an unknown accident on April 10, at 3:45 a.m. at the intersection of 9 Mile and Vinton, in Alpine Township. Also responding to the scene was Alpine Township Fire Department, AeroMed, and Rockford Ambulance.

They determined that the vehicle, a 2005 Pontiac Grand Prix, was traveling north on Vinton, when the teen driver lost control and went off the roadway, and struck a tree at the northeast corner of Vinton and 9 Mile.

There were five teenagers in the vehicle, and they all suffered serious injuries.

One of the passengers, Alyssa Eggerding, 16, of Alpine Township, died Monday, April 11, of her injuries. She was a junior at Sparta High School, and member of the varsity softball team.

The other teens involved in the accident included the driver, Armando Mendoza, 17, of Alpine Township; Alyssa Naughton, 16, of Walker; Kaitlin Keeler, 15, of Alpine Township; and Olivia Lawrence, 17, of Sparta. Lawrence is also a Sparta High School student, and the others are Comstock Park High School students.

Police do not believe that the driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol. The Sheriff department’s investigation will be forwarded to the Kent County Prosecutor’s office for review and formal charges once it is completed.

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Teens face charges after attempted break-in


Kyle Adam Norvell

Kyle Adam Norvell

The names of two older teens have been released in the attempted break-in at the Cedar Springs Public Schools Hilltop Administration building early Wednesday morning, March 23.

According to the Kent County Sheriff Department, they responded to the call at 3:22 a.m. of several suspects trying to break in to Hilltop. A witness reportedly scared off four suspects. It was initially reported that they could be armed with weapons, but detectives weren’t able to verify that any weapons were used.

Alexandr Ivan Rohloff

Alexandr Ivan Rohloff

After an intensive search by the deputies on scene, two white males were taken into custody for questioning.

The two suspects admitted to breaking into at least two homes and at least six motor vehicles over the past month. During the interview, the remaining two suspects were identified. One was located in the Cedar Springs area and taken into custody for questioning. This suspect also confirmed the break-ins.

Arrested was Alexandr Ivan Rohloff, 17, of Cedar Springs, and Kyle Adam Norvell, 19, of Grant. A male juvenile was also arrested.

Both Rohloff and the juvenile were charged with two counts of home invasion, and one count of resisting and obstructing a police officer. Norvell was charged with one count of resisting and obstructing a police officer, and a probation violation.

Rohloff’s bail was set at $50,000 cash/surety on each home invasion charge, and $10,000 cash/surety on the resisting and obstructing.

Norvell’s bail was set at $5,000, 10 percent.

Police have not yet apprehended the fourth suspect. The investigation is still open.

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Three arrested in after attempted break-in


Three suspects are in jail and another suspect is being sought after an attempted break-in at the Cedar Springs Public Schools Hilltop administration building early Wednesday morning, March 23.

According to the Kent County Sheriff Department, they responded to the call at 3:22 a.m. of several suspects trying to break in to Hilltop. A witness reportedly scared off the four suspects. It was initially reported that they could be armed with weapons, but detectives haven’t been able to verify that any weapons were used.

After an intensive search by the deputies on scene, two white males were taken into custody for questioning.

The two suspects admitted to breaking into at least two homes and at least six motor vehicles over the past month. According to Sgt. Jason Kelley, they took place in the City of Cedar Springs.

During the interview, the remaining two suspects were identified. One was located in the Cedar Springs area and taken into custody for questioning. This suspect also confirmed the break-ins.

Two adult males and one juvenile have been lodged in the Kent County Jail for charges ranging from Home Invasion 1st, Probation violation and Larceny from a Motor Vehicle. The fourth suspect has been identified and is currently being sought for questioning.

Names of the suspects are being withheld until after arraignment.

This investigation remains open.

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Credit card skimmer found at local gas station


_N-Credit-card-Skimmer_file-photoOn Saturday, March 19, 2016, state and federal regulators and various law enforcement agencies conducted a full-scale gas pump blitz across Michigan as part of the ongoing efforts to crackdown on consumer credit card information being hacked by credit card skimmers.

The Kent County Sheriff Department participated in the sweep that was coordinated by the Department of Agriculture and partnered with the FBI. Michigan State Police, and other Sheriff Departments in several counties. During the sweep, a credit card skimmer was found a pump at the Citgo gas station, located on 17 Mile and White Creek, in Cedar Springs. The skimmer was collected by the Kent County Sheriff Department and turned over to the FBI.

Due to the skimmer being proactively located, it is believed that several people were protected from credit card fraud, as the unknown suspect(s) were unable to retrieve the information contained on the skimmer,” said Sgt. Jason Kelley, with Sheriff Department’s Cedar Springs unit.

During Saturday’s blitz, which took officials from Grand Rapids to Saginaw to Lansing to the U.P. to Detroit and Traverse City, three credit card skimming devices were removed and confiscated and more than 3,000 pumps were checked. The other two skimmers were found at gas stations in Howell, Michigan.

These blitzes make it clear to these cyber-criminals we’re actively looking for skimming devices – not just during the traditional work week – but on weekends too,” said Jamie Clover Adams, MDARD Director. “Credit card skimmers will not be tolerated and Michigan’s Weights and Measures inspectors, gas station owners, and law enforcement will continue to be on the hunt for skimmers to protect the state’s consumers from fraud.”

Credit card skimmers can’t be seen from outside the pump. Criminals use keys to quickly open the pumps, insert the skimmers and leave. Skimmers can be installed in seconds. The skimmers then make a copy of the consumer’s card information for criminals to make fraudulent purchases.

Some steps station owners can take to protect their patrons are changing locks, using tamper-proof security tape, and adding security cameras. Additionally, owners should also be increasing their dispenser inspections, and be more aware of these attacks,” said Clover Adams.

Jennifer Holton, with the MDARD, said that checking for skimmers has been an everyday practice since August 2015, but occasionally they do a blitz. “Not only do we check the quality of the gasoline, but we check for skimmers, too,” she explained.

Holton said that if something seems off at the pump, go inside to pay, and alert the cashier if you see something off. You should also regularly monitor your credit and debit card info to make sure you recognize purchases. “Immediately notify your banking institution if you notice something that shouldn’t be there,” she said.

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Falling tree causes car crash


The accident occurred just north of 14 Mile, near Cedar Creek. Post photo by J. Reed

The accident occurred just north of 14 Mile, near Cedar Creek. Post photo by J. Reed

A tree landed on the roof of this car Wednesday, causing the driver to swerve and roll the car. Post photo by J. Reed

A tree landed on the roof of this car Wednesday, causing the driver to swerve and roll the car. Post photo by J. Reed

By Judy Reed

A freak accident sent two people from Solon Township to the hospital Wednesday afternoon.

According to both the Kent County Sheriff Department and a witness at the scene, a Chevrolet Cruze was heading south on Algoma about 2:06 p.m. Wednesday, March 16, just north of 14 Mile, when high winds toppled a tree and it landed on the roof of the car.

“They panicked and swerved and flipped the car into the ditch,” explained Brian Bos, of Moline, who was traveling behind the car and saw it happen. He immediately called 911, then went to check on the occupants. “They were pretty shaken up,” he said.

This tree snapped and landed on the roof of a passing car Wednesday, causing it to leave the road. Photo by J. Reed

This tree snapped and landed on the roof of a passing car Wednesday, causing it to leave the road. Photo by J. Reed

Shortly after the accident, winds took down another tree just north of the scene.

According to Kent County Sheriff Deputy Michael Allen, the two occupants in the vehicle, driver Sheldon Lennox, 56, and Bobbi Scholten, 52, suffered minor injuries and were transported to Spectrum Butterworth by Rockford Ambulance. They were reportedly on their way to Florida.

Algoma Fire and Rescue assisted at the scene.

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