Sheriff’s office gets approval to add 8 deputies
By Neal A. Shipman
The McKenzie County Sheriff’s Office will be adding eight new deputies to its staff in the coming months in order to meet a growing caseload.
On Tuesday, Feb. 4, the McKenzie County Commissioners gave Matt Johansen, county sheriff, the approval to begin hiring six more patrol officers, one additional truck enforcement deputy, as well as one additional deputy who would be responsible for serving protection, criminal summons, warrants and transporting prisoners.
“Adding the six patrol positions would allow there to be four shifts with one Sergeant and five deputies on each shift,” stated Johansen. “This will allow better coverage in the county and allow deputies to be proactive and not just reactive, especially with the increase of calls for service.”
While the commissioners gave their unanimous approval to Johansen’s request, Gene Veeder and Howdy Lawlar questioned the sheriff as to where the patrol and truck enforcement deputies would be patrolling.
“The majority of the calls I get is from residents asking for more patrolling on rural roads,” stated Commissioner Veeder. “Will these allow you to get out on the county roads better?”
Commissioner Lawlar also expressed his concern on the number of phone calls that he has received regarding county deputies on U.S. Highway 85.
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