Township/Village share Sheriff’s patrol
Deputy Rick DeLand has been patrolling the Village of Grass Lake for the past year and will now be expanding his patrols into the Township after the Grass Lake Charter Township and the Village both signed agreements with the Office of the Jackson County Sheriff to split the time and costs of the patrols for a dedicated deputy.
The 5-year contract that began February 1, 2016 calls for a full-time deputy being assigned to Grass Lake. The contract covers all the costs including benefits, vehicles, supervisors, insurance and administrative costs. The contract for 2016 is $69,160 with the costs split equally between the Township and the Village. The cost increases incrementally each year over the next 5 years to bring it in line with the costs other Townships and Villages are paying. Another change from the previous contract is when Deputy DeLand is on vacation, coverage will continue with another deputy. Until this new contract, the Village was paying the full cost of the contract.
Deputy DeLand, age 49, is excited for the additional coverage within the Township. “More visibility is the biggest deterrent to crime.” While Grass Lake is relatively quiet and crime comes in spurts, its great to have the additional visibility. DeLand said that the biggest help the public can do is be a “trained observer. Pay attention to your surroundings and call and report anything suspicious. We would rather it be nothing.” He reiterated “ Don’t be afraid to call 911”.
This is Deputy DeLand’s second tour in Grass Lake. He previously patrolled the Village from 2006-2010 before Deputy Brian Sturgill took over the Village duties. Deputy Sturgill retired in December of 2014, opening the door for DeLand to return.
Deputy DeLand has been a Police Officer for the past 15 years, starting in 1990 with the Columbia Township Police Department. When asked what he likes best about being a Sheriff’s Deputy he said “I like helping people when you can.” He said the reception in the Township has “been great. Everyone is real receptive”. He added “Grass Lake is great, its friendly, very homey and a traditional town.”